What do Strava, Headspace and Wagestream all have in common?
Hi, I’m Alex Partridge, former Olympic rower and now Wellbeing Ambassador and Partnerships Director at Wagestream.
After life at the highest level in Olympic sport and taking the dive into the deep end of a cataclysmic melt down in mental and physical health, I know all to well the extremes of both scenarios. Experiencing these two extremes is why I am so passionate about the wellbeing space and all elements that make up supporting a greater resilience to maintaining positive wellbeing in your life.
Wellbeing is a trendy term that has had many hats over the years. Some call it health, some call it the pursuit of happiness, I lean on these three; earth, strength, and happiness.
What should be known is that wellbeing is never linear. One doesn’t start on the positive wellbeing curve and see a linear straight line in an upwards direction. It’s more like a sine curve. There are ups and downs all along the way. However the goal should be about limiting the downs on that curve as much as possible. Putting in place mechanisms that can aid and support one when the down forces and stresses of life start to overwhelm.
This is what I have devoted my life to since hitting rock bottom in August 2016. I never want anyone to experience the pain that you can feel as an individual and the knock on impact for the loved ones around you. Let me make it clear, I will not get it right all the time from now on, no one is ever perfect, but there is something that changes the core of a person when they develop the self-awareness of the pursuit of wellbeing for themselves and those around them.
This is why I believe in Wagestream, because at the core it is a tool that can change people’s lives for the better both now in its current state, but also in all the amazing things we have planned for it in the future.
So follow my journey as the Wagestream Wellbeing Ambassador as I explore and share more and more of the simple everyday activities, tools and practices that help to create this world into a more positive place.
What do Strava, Headspace, and Wagestream all have in common?
Every single one of these app-based tools has powerfully changed and improved the way people interact with the four core elements of Wellbeing, physical, mental, financial and social.
When Strava was released in 2009 no one could see that this would be one of the most powerful engagement tools in exercise the planet has ever seen. Who knew that an app just focused around cycle routes, segment KOM’s, and very basic hints and tips to improve speed would change to become the most widely used and largest exercise community in the world across almost every sport imaginable? I remember my own scepticism at the beginning. Who on earth would pay to record what they do for free on an app.? Now look at me. I can’t run, cycle, swim or do press ups for more than 10 seconds without recording it on Strava. If it’s not on Strava it doesn’t exist.
The same can be said for Headspace or even the crazy iceman Wim Hof’s Method. Why pay to record the amount of time you spend chilling out. I can do that in my own time and it’s free. But do I? No because I am human and I am lazy. I fall back into my bad habits. I always find a reason that gets in the way. That’s the way we are. But put a goal in front me. A crazy Dutch man who holds his breath and jumps in cold showers to help me get back my Chee or mood music and a gentle nudge notification on my phone to go and switch off and zone out. Boom, I’m there and with 100’s of thousands of others who love the same thing.
Why is this? Because inherently we know exercise is important for physical health, our bodies and mind have always known that switching off and slowing down is good for our mental health. Even more bizarrely we love telling people about what we’ve done. We love to share the positive things we have done with like minded positive communities. This is inherent in our DNA because socially (another key pillar of mental wellbeing) we want to feel part of communities that make us accountable to each other and drive us to more positive behaviours.
All these helpful wellbeing tools required some degree of a change in mindset about well-established beliefs or behaviours. At the outset there was scepticism and disbelief, but ultimately if something is genuinely designed to assist wellbeing it will win out.
Wagestream is no different. We are an app that improves financial wellbeing, and changes financial behaviour by allowing people to access their earned income when they want it. It’s an app that tracks your earnings, enables micro saving and financially educates in an engaging way. And we hear you, you might be thinking that providing access to wages like this is crazy. We think what’s more crazy is the monthly pay cycle, something that hasn’t changed for over 100 years, and the fact that many working people have to turn to expensive forms of short term credit just to make it to payday.
What Wagestream provides is effective access to the money that you’ve already earned and full oversight into what you will earn, even if you’re a non-salaried worker, creating a more stable and secure relationship between employees and their finances. We are already starting to see a change in mindset towards finances with our users and we only expect that to grow.
Changing mindsets is never an easy thing but improving the ability for individuals to live more fruitful lives is always worth the challenge and taking a leap of faith.
For more information on how Wagestream can improve the financial wellbeing of your employees, get in touch.