Emotional Health is an integral part of a complete optimal health picture. We are more aware than ever of the importance of emotional health and the role it plays in complete wellness and while there are hundreds of ways to grow in this area, here are 3 tips to improve emotional health.
Learning how to improve emotional health is a skill to be learnt and one that will impact every area of life in a positive way.
While emotional health is not to be mistaken with mental health, the terms are interchanged regularly and they do play well off each other.
Unfortunately emotional health can often be seen as woo woo, yet it is equally as important as any other aspect of our health and wellness.
Emotional health is our ability to deal with our emotions as they arise, to process our emotions and release them in a healthy and positive way, to understand ourselves, to live authentically, to have a great sense of self-awareness and to have a sense of peace within ourselves.
This life skill is one we continue to sharpen, as when we improve emotional health, we improve every other area of our health and life also.
Mistakes we make regarding emotional health
While I believe wholeheartedly that our natural state is one of health, happiness and vitality, this does not mean we need always be happy and smiling. This is a common misconception when we speak about emotional health.
To be happy and upbeat all the time would be artificial and inauthentic. Doing so or trying to do so takes more energy than simply feeling what needs to be felt, though until we are taught many of us just don’t know how, so we spend an enormous amount of energy each day hold the emotions down like a pressure cooker and masking ourselves all day.
Our emotions are neither good nor bad, they are simply there to help us move forwards in life in a way that takes us further towards our natural state, further towards who we really are. Emotions, whether they feel great or whether they feel annoying, are both signals for us to either make changes, to listen, to learn or to let us know we are right on track.
What needs to be understood, is those who have a great resolve in their emotional health, have the skill to feel, name, process and move through their emotions and events in a manner that supports them, instead of holding things in and allowing them to fester. Some of us are carrying around 20 to 50 kilos of emotional baggage every day. Now that’s exhausting!
Improving emotional health means having the ability to respond to life and events instead of reacting to them. It means you respond in a way of your choosing. Instead of feeling like life is happening to you, you understand that life is happening for you and improving emotional health is a large part of this.
Vulnerability is another skill that shows great emotional strength and great emotional health. To be able to be vulnerable, especially with those closest to you is one of the best gifts you can give both yourself and those you choose to share life with.
3 Tips to Improve Emotional Health
We simply cannot get away from the fact that the body is made to move.
Movement (in any way we enjoy) helps us to release negative emotions, assists with feelings of positivity and achievement and allows us to clear our thoughts and feelings.
I have always said, “I’m a nicer person when I exercise”. This is true for many of us.
Lack of sleep makes us less able to cope with life events, stress and can lead to an increase in anxiety and moodiness.
Improving Emotional Health means being responsive instead of reactive. When we react instead of responding to life, people and events it can mean we often handle things very differently.
Has someone ever said something to you and you snapped at them? Not because of what they said, but because you were exhausted and when exhausted any mood or reaction is possible.
Things bother us that usually wouldn’t, we can overreact and become intolerant with the smallest of challenges. In many instances this completely changes the outcome we want.
Making sure we have a bedroom that welcomes peace, calm and sleep and that we get quality sleep, is essential to us having a high level of emotional health. If we want to improve emotional health, getting enough quality sleep is an essential component of this process.
3. Know your emotions
An important area to look at if we really want to improve our emotional health is learning how to process our emotions.
To do this in a healthy and positive way is a life skill with endless positive returns. Imagine not being upset by your family member who always knows what to say to get you annoyed.
Imagine being able to improve your emotional health to such a point that you become acutely aware of the impact others have on you and you on them, and then being able to choose how you want to feel around anyone in any circumstance. What would that change?
Often we hear ourselves or others say, “I feel bad” or “Yeah, I’m ok” or “I’m good”.
When in a bad mood, do you just feel bad? Or do you feel frustrated, angry, annoyed, irritated?
If you are in a good mood, do you just feel good, or do you feel, happy, wonderful, amazing, fantastic?
We rarely truly express how we really feel and we rarely get to the real underlying emotions of how we feel.
If we are unable to name our emotions, how can we expect to feel and process them fully, so we can move through life without them weighing us down.
So next time you want to improve your emotional health, make sure you
- 1 -Truly feel what sits in you, let it be there without the need to push it down.
- 2 -Name that feeling, either out loud or silently. Give that feeling one or many names.
- 3- Breathe calmly and deeply though the feeling
- 4 -Thank the feeling for being there. It’s there to help you to notice what you need to know to grow, learn or change.
- 5 -Understand why the feeling is there. What situation is it related to? Whom is it related too?
Even naming emotions and using the correct terminology with your feelings is a great start to improve emotional health. It creates an awareness in this area, and as I always say, awareness is the first step to change.
Once you have taken yourself through these steps, you can decide upon the right course of action for you and continue the process of releasing the emotions you’ve held onto for so long.
Does Emotional Health Just Happen?
Like anything, to improve emotional health is a skill to be learnt and just like all areas of health, emotional health is crucial to our overall wellbeing.
For us to get the most from life and ourselves, emotional wellbeing must be one of the foundations that we learn to be our best.
The great part is, there are literally hundreds of things we can do to improve upon or upskill our emotional health.
Most of us were never taught emotional health or how to improve our emotional health, however it’s never too late to learn an incredibly useful and powerful life skill.
Don’t let that stop you from making steps forward today to increase and improve your emotional health and wellbeing.