Be more like Jacinda: Why we all need a wellbeing budget

When New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern came to power she promised her government would do things differently, and with Thursday’s landmark Wellbeing Budget she kept her word.

“Today we have laid the foundation for not just one Wellbeing Budget, but a different approach for government decision-making all together,” Ardern said.

Promising to put matters of public wellbeing next to the economic figures, her government has announced billions of dollars towards new spending on tackling mental health, suicide rates, child poverty, homelessness and domestic violence. It’s the first time a western country has designed an entire budget around wellbeing measures.

“For me, wellbeing means people living lives of purpose, balance and meaning to them, and having the capabilities to do so,” New Zealand’s Finance Minister Grant Robertson said.

And I’m applauding it! As a leadership strategist and modern psychology practitioner (and someone who works with burnt-out leaders all the time), at a time when the world’s peak medical body has just included burnout in their guidebook for diagnostic classifications, public investment in wellbeing is much needed.

Women running themselves into the ground to run the ‘insta-perfect’ life, juggling businesses, careers, families, health and home life, is one of the biggest issues facing women in 2019.

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