Lifestyle Changes that Improve Our Well-being

Lifestyle Changes that Improve Our Well-being

Which area of our lives are having the most impact, both favorable and unfavorable, on our economy? Zoe Gilbertson of Cambridge Doughnut UK has crafted a Personal Donut to help us identify these areas in order to help improve our and our economy’s well-being. You can read about creating personal donuts here. You can create your own personal donut, or you can use the template below to start identifying those areas of your life where you can make a lifestyle change to improve our well-being. 

  1. Circle the item in each spoke of the wheel that best describes your personal situation. 
  2. Count up the number of items tinted red up to and including the one you circled (zero if you did not circle a red-tinted item) across all the spokes in the upper half of the wheel. 
  3. Enter the sum in the Carbon Footprint Box. 
  4. The higher the number, the more opportunities you have to make lifestyle changes that will improve our well-being. If you circled an item inside the dark green circle, you may need assistance in making the changes needed to move into the Donut. 

The lower half of the Personal Donut cites items for your personal growth that you may want to pursue. For example, in the Society spoke, if your contribution to society is only voting, you would circle the vote, supported item. To increase your contribution to society, pick an item farther out on this spoke to strive for, possibly active impact, making a difference. You can score the lower half of the donut in the same manner as for the top half. Now, a higher score reflects a more positive impact on well-being. Is your lower half score higher than your upper half score?

Paraphrasing John F. Kennedy, “Ask not what your society can do for you, but what can you do for our society?”

What Our Democracy Needs: Devoted Citizenship

What Our Democracy Needs: Devoted Citizenship

People often ask, what actions can we take to preserve our democracy? To address this very question, Richard Haas has just published his book on being a good citizen in a democracy. The title of the book is “The Bill of Obligations: The Ten Habits of Good Citizens”. The obligations Haas presented are: Be Informed, Get Involved, Stay Open to Compromise, Stay Civil, Reject Violence, Value Norms, Promote the Common Good, Respect Government Service, Support the Teaching of Civics, and Put Country First. Along with explaining each obligation in depth, he provides an extensive reading list for avid readers to learn more about our democracy.

Some of us have never learned the habits that Haas proposed, or have forgotten what is required of us if we want to preserve our democracy. For instance, I attended a meeting with my Congressional representative during which three hecklers kept interrupting when they did not like what was being said. When it was my turn to speak, I told them they will lose our democracy when they try to suppress dissenting views. This goes to show that we need to resist any and all efforts to overturn our democracy, as no other form of governance encourages citizen input.

This blog post is the third in a series of posts devoted to answering the question, “What can I do personally, to promote a well-being economy?” The first post presented an assortment of actions each of us can do individually. The second post highlighted possible lifestyle changes you could make by scoring whether you are living within the doughnut of a sustainable economy. Please read the other two posts. Together, they provide a wealth of resources and opportunities to foster greater well-being for everyone.

Rex S. Green

Here Is What YOU Can Do To Promote Wellbeing for Everyone!

Here Is What YOU Can Do To Promote Wellbeing for Everyone!

The Wellbeing Economy Alliance is a global organization working to transform economies to prioritize the well-being of people and the planet over increasing GDP. You can help promote this transformation by taking steps outlined below to move us closer to a well-being economy in the United States by 2040. To learn more about our plan for achieving this goal, go to

In Your Space:

  • Participate in recycling reusable materials–paper, metal, glass, cans, bottles, etc.
  • Read the labels on the foods you buy and avoid additives that are unhealthy or potentially harmful.
    • High fructose corn syrup
    • Trans Fats
    • Sodium Nitrite
    • Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)
    • Artificial food coloring
    • Aspartame
    • BHA and BHT
    • Potassium bromate
    • Carrageenan
  • Buy more fresh foods that are locally produced. Ask your grocer about their sources.
  • Ask yourself how well you are doing and rate yourself every 3-4 months. You can use this scale: Really Great, Pretty Good, Good, Just Okay, Not that well, Pretty Bad, Really Awful. Keep track of how your well-being changes over time to see if you are doing better or worse. If worse, see what you might change to make things go better.

In Your Environment:

  • Keep track of who your representatives are at the federal and state government levels. Contact them with your concerns. Ask them for a copy of a report specifying how much money they are receiving for their reelection campaign. Consider voting for someone else when your rep is receiving large sums from special interest groups.
    • Federal –
    • State –
  • Volunteer for local community projects that you believe will better the lives of community residents. Just look up your city or town website and search for the activities and events it is sponsoring or planning. Watch for opportunities to help plan the future of your community.
  • Start a voter discussion group with people you know. Share the workload of following what your representatives are voting for. Have every member write to your representative when you want to direct their attention to a problem. Contact people running for local offices to obtain information about their views and plans should they be elected.
  • Develop a list of companies you think are contributing to everyone’s wellbeing and purchase their products instead of from companies you think may be harming us. Here are several signs of a company promoting well-being:
    • Follows ethical business practices and obeys the laws
    • Only sells products that are safe and perform well
    • Pays adequate living wages to all employees
    • Maintains a safe and convivial work environment
    • Start by learning more about the grocery store or supermarket and gas station where you make purchases. You can ask the grocery store employees how they are being treated. Independent brands of gasoline typically cost less, and some of the money is more likely pocketed by a person in your community. Some oil and gas companies are switching to renewable energy sources faster than others, particularly Shell Oil.
    • On the other hand, try to avoid companies that do not follow ethical business practices. An Ethical Consumer survey pointed to the following 8 companies that have the poorest track records: Nestlé, Monsanto, Amazon, Shell, Tesco, Barclays, Exxon, and Walmart. A source for finding ethical companies is

WEALL hopes you find this list helpful in satisfying your desire to make our world a better place to live. If so, whenever someone you know says, “I don’t know what I can do to make a difference,” direct them to our website.