Quality n. degree of goodness
Quality of life: the general well-being of individuals and societies
As I sit on my bed writing this blog – with my husband lying next to me marking the bhangra section on some GCSE listening exams – I find myself ruminating on what exactly quality of life means. We often say we are moving to Sweden to improve our quality of life, but what does that really mean? What makes life ‘good quality’ or ‘bad quality’?
For me, the definition is very personal. Quality of life means being able to do what is important to me on a daily basis. Of course, what is important to me changes according to which season of life I am in, but there are some solid constants; spending time with God, maintaining positive relationships with family and friends, staying healthy and energetic, looking after my environment and self-expression through the arts.
“How does running a hotel have anything to do with any of those things??” I hear you ask! Well, I suppose it’s partly about the location of the hotel. Today, for example, I improved my quality of life by walking around Hackney Downs on my lunch break. In 47 days time, I will be walking around the banks of Lake Asnen.
Sometimes, at the end of a day in London, I am not sure how well I have lived according to my ‘quality of life’ values. For example, in my teens I was massively environmentally aware. My friends and I went through a stage of refusing to travel ANYWHERE by car so that we could save on fossil fuels. I was a member of Friends of the Earth and attended meetings and a national conference. But as I got older, other priorities took over. When I run my own hotel, I will have the power to make good environmental choices over things such as waste disposal, power supply, procurement of food and much more. I really hope we can create a business which is sustainable, environmentally friendly and (of course!) profitable.
Life in Urshult will be very different to life in London and – hopefully – more in tune with our values.