Baking and the Four Pillars of Wellbeing

Wellbeing: be it at at work, on TV ads, with friends, we have all been hearing and reading this buzzword over the past years. As we have recently come across the Māori interpretation of wellbeing, we fully resonated with it and wanted to share it with you all as well. It really made us stop for a while and think about the meaning behind all the wellbeing headlines.

In New Zealand, the Māori philosophy of health and wellbeing known as Hauora, indicates the existence of four dimensions, which need to be in balance in our life. These are: Physical wellbeing (Taha tinana), Mental wellbeing (Taha hinengaro), Spiritual wellbeing (Taha wairua) and Social wellbeing (Taha whānau). If one or more of these lack love and attention, imbalance feels invited to the show and we start to experience its unwanted presence. Have you ever thought about the connection between a certain side of your life and the presence of unhappiness and/or lack of purpose? We hope that this article will come in handy to inspire and prompt you to think about the significance that understanding what your wellbeing is created from has.

We find Hauora to be a great framework for designing our own concept of wellbeing. It is important to take the time to identify and acknowledge our own needs that correspond to each of the four pillars. As we are all unique individuals, we need to understand that wellbeing means different things to different people.

We are seeing the benefits of writing down our own version of what makes us happy, content and brings us satisfaction and a daily purpose to show up. We invite you to take a piece of paper, colour pens and start filling in the dots below in order to design your own happy intent.

1. Physical wellbeing (Think about where you are at this very moment and where you would like to be, what can you do to experience more of what you would like to have happening in this pillar in your life. Feel free to list actions you decide to take. Do remember to be good with yourself and take it a day at a time, no need for the pressure of deadlines). ……………………………………..

2. Mental wellbeing (Stop and observe how are you feeling mentally at this very moment. Is there anything that needs addressing? If so, start writing down your thoughts and think of steps to improve this pillar). ……………………………………..

3. Spiritual wellbeing (Have you been too busy recently and have been neglecting this pillar of wellbeing? We cannot blame you for it! Great opportunity to start thinking about what could expand your spiritual side, perhaps picking up that book you made a note of a while ago and forgot to click buy or the perhaps you wish to start with a short walk as after all it’s finally Spring and it would be a shame not to observe the beauty of the blossom in your environment). ……………………………

4. Social wellbeing (The past few months have been challenging for many of us, we all have different coping mechanisms in place and while some of us thrived on friends and family Zoom calls, others found it more comforting to withdraw inwards and put socialising aside. If this is the case, perhaps this is the time to take small steps and make that call, check on your friends, relatives and acquaintances all in your own time. If comfortable, invite a close friend for a walk and a talk). ………………………

At The Crumbly Bakers we found a direct connection between baking and wellbeing. The therapeutical benefits of baking make us tick and keep us going. Besides, baking fantastically fills all the pillars in such a beautiful way. Physically, it keeps us moving by sourcing ingredients, baking in itself and preparing the kitchen and home for the perfect photo shoot, oh boy all these Instagram perfect photos do take lots of energy! :). Mentally, baking brings us to the present moment. Many people use baking as a form of meditation and many mantras have been dedicated to the act of cooking and baking, with the aim of enhancing the healing energy of a meal. In addition, the satisfaction of a bake prepared with love is priceless. Spiritually, without much effort, we find ourselves being grateful for our hands, these amazing tools we are lucky to have to prepare lovely cakes. During baking, it can get overwhelming to observe the harmony of the different ingredients with their own colour, texture and unique role in creating the perfect bake. And finally, from a social perspective, there is no bigger joy than sharing your bakes with your dear ones. Great connections spark around a piece of cake and a cup of tea.

The Oxford English Dictionary defines wellbeing as “the state of being comfortable, healthy, or happy”. We would love to leave you with this definition as food for thought. Take a moment to think of what is that makes you comfortable, happy and how healthy are the actions, the environments and the relationships that you are engaging with.

Love and Crumbs

Mariana and Kay x