The wellbeing of Singaporeans: Physically, mentally and socially

The wellbeing of Singaporeans: Physically, mentally and socially

How are you?

Text: Jeway Tan

Image: Unsplash

2020 might be history but many are still grippling with the aftermath. The past year has taken a toll on everyone, be it physically, mentally, socially or the culmination of the three. For many, we had to find ways to address and cope with the changes that life dealt us, mainly brought upon by the global pandemic. With efforts from our national leaders and vigilance from the whole country, things do seem to be looking up.

However, in a recent report on the global wellbeing by Lululemon, the seemingly rosy facade isn't quite adding up. In fact, Singaporeans might not be as 'fine' as they claim they are. The report which Edelman Data & Intelligence (Dxl) managed for Lululemon, surveyed 1000 Singaporeans, ages 18 and above. The research shows the key demographics, key drivers and barriers of wellbeing as well as optimism of the future. Here are some interesting key points that can be found in the report.

Let us start with what wellbeing means...

The definition of wellbeing may be different for everyone. Some define it as the five aspects of holistic health, looking beyond the physical body and focusing on the physical, emotional, social, mental and spiritual health. At the same time, others term it as being happy, comfortable and having a sense of an inviting environment.

This report defined wellbeing through three core elements:

Physical wellbeing is about people feeling good enough physically to perform physical activities that they either want or need to do. Mental wellbeing is described as the feeling of self-awareness, being emotionally balanced and the sense that they are moving in a life fulfilling direction. Last but not least, social wellbeing is defined as feeling close to others and the sense of being part of a supportive community.


The overall wellbeing of Singaporeans

The total wellbeing of Singaporeans is slightly higher than that of the global wellbeing. Overall, our total wellbeing is at 66%, 1% higher than the global total, putting us at a high, moderate on the scale level. We are physically and mentally at a stronger standing with our percentage at 68%, 2% more than the global percentage. Socially wise, we are at 64%, a moderate level, 1% higher than the global scale.

At a closer glance, men's total wellbeing is at 64% while women are at 62%. In the age demographics, the generation who has the highest total wellbeing is the Boomer generation, and they are at 66%. The generation with the lowest total is Gen Z. Coming in at only 59%, it was revealed that Gen Z has had the most difficulty coping with the pandemic. It is likely due to many factors such as time and personal responsibilty, lack of money, limited personal support and stress.


What Singaporeans dub as the key drivers of wellbeing

With COVID-19 looming over us, many of us had to stay and work/study from home. Around 41% of the respondents strongly agree that they feel comfortable in their homes. In comparison, only 13% strongly agree that they are in the right place, financial wise. Out of the 1000 Singaporeans surveyed, 18% can manage stress effectively, and 20% have enough energy in them to accomplish their daily task. 17% of the respondents strongly agree that they have a healthy work/school/home life balance. Only 16% of Singaporeans surveyed felt like they have enough sleep to be well-rested. Unfortunately, only 16% of the respondents felt that growing up, their mental wellbeing was acknowledged in their household.

The barriers to a strong wellbeing

What's stopping us? 59% of Singaporeans surveyed say it is due to time and responsibilities. 52% states that it's due to COVID-19. Money seems to be another large barrier that stands in the way of having a strong wellbeing. Other factors include the lack of a supportive network, health issues, stress, a lack of access to resources and knowledge as well as the lack of personal space.

How Singaporeans feel about the future now compared to a year ago

After what we all have been through, our feelings towards the future may have changed. A year ago, the optimism that we had of the future may be different from the optimism we have now. The research shows that 60% of the respondents felt that they were optimistic about the future a year ago. Compared to now, only 38% feels optimistic about the future.

The silver lining to all of this, is that there's always opportunities for percentages to change. Solutions and aids are all out there, especially now that we are in the know. Check out, check in, take care of you before anything else.

For more on mental health, click here.