Importance of Emotional Well-being for Physical and Mental Health

Every day we face so much pressure at work, at home, in our social circles, and probably in our community too. We are like pressure cookers building up steam inside. However, with our need to be politically correct and emotionally cool, we tend to trample down our emotions until we are ready to blow out and fall apart.

You need to understand this, emotions are indicators of your mental health and you will have to deal with them right before they turn around and wreck your life.

Does Emotional Health Affect Your Physical Health?

Ignoring your emotions and sweeping them under the carpet play havoc with your health. Consider the phrases that you use in your everyday parlance: trembling with fear, shudder at the thought, burn with anger, stomach churns with disgust. All of these expressions are indicators of how emotions affect your health. These are not just phrases and expressions of language, they are a clear expression of how emotions affect your physical.

All major systems of the body like the cardiovascular, immune, and endocrine systems are regulated by the brain. The endocrine system, which secretes hormones, has a strong influence on our emotional health. According to Charles Goodstein, a professor of psychiatry, at New York University, “Thoughts and feelings are generated inside the mind; yet influence the secretion of hormones from the endocrine system. The hormones affect physiology.” That’s the reason why when the mind is disrupted mind, emotions arise making you feel differently.

However, you don’t have to be happy all the time. It simply means that the person has to be aware of his/her thoughts feeling and behaviors and is able to handle them effectively. The good news is your thoughts and emotions are yours to handle. It is up to you to keep yourself emotionally healthy.

How to Take Care of Your Emotional Health?

  • Become aware of your thought processes, keep a record of how thoughts occur in your mind and how they affect your physiology. Are they predominantly positive or filled with negativity, fear, and anxiety? Recording the nature of your thoughts would help you understand and deal with them effectively.
  • Try to understand what triggers negative emotions? Sometimes just a smell or something you see or hear could trigger off unwanted feelings of anxiety, pain, or misery. It is then possible to act on those involuntary reactions by stopping them right where they start. Even avoiding or preparing to face these triggers could help you handle your emotions better.
  • Train your mind to think positive thoughts. Positive affirmations could help. Get over negative thinking by stopping them as soon as they surface in your mind. Question and confront negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones.
  • Make sure you respond appropriately to your emotions. If you are sad let your trusted friend know how you feel, instead of trying to smile and put on a fake front that adds more stress.
  • Having a gratitude journal where you record the things you are grateful for keeps your thoughts anchored on positive events and encourages positive thinking.
  • Respond to people or circumstances but do not allow your emotions to take control of you. Reacting is giving emotions a free ride.
  • Forgive yourself and others. Remember that all of us are fallible and no one is perfect. Everyone needs forgiveness not because it is divine to forgive but because it helps keep you emotionally stable.
  • We are all bound to fail at times, that is part of the natural process of learning. Make sure that you get up each time you fall, don’t keep beating yourself about it.
  • Find ways to reduce your stress. Make sure to learn techniques that can help you relax and those you could use anywhere.
  • Learn to accept yourself, do not become your worst critic, there is no way of escaping from yourself. A little self-appreciation goes a long way. It is important to work on relationships, supportive relationship/s can help see you through stressful times.
  • Learn to remain positive despite changing circumstances. Take care of your body. Getting enough sleep is not only good for your brain but also for the body.
  •  Exercise could not only help keep your body fit but also help you get adequate sleep.

How to Take Care of Your Emotional Wellbeing

In order to understand what emotional well-being is and how you can achieve emotional well-being, let’s look into some key concepts on emotional health.

What is emotional independence?

You become emotionally independent when you are able to feel good about yourself and feel secure and comfortable in your own company. The need to run to someone every time you have a small problem or you don’t feel good about yourself is almost nonexistent. You are confident about who you are and you are ready to take on the world all by yourself. 

Let me clarify this right at the start, you are emotionally independent doesn’t mean you distance yourself from your partner, spouse, or other people. Emotional independence means you give yourself and other people the space to be her even in a close relationship.

How does the lack of emotional independence affect you?

The lack of emotional independence makes you want to cling to another individual for your every emotional need.  It is possible you could inadvertently make the other person responsible for your happiness thus burdening another human with what should be your personal responsibility.

How to become emotionally independent or emotionally self-reliant?

  • Know yourself: Get to know who you are what your thoughts, emotions, desires, and aims in life are. Make sure that these are not about someone, but about you.
  • Face yourself: It doesn’t matter how your past has been; you can script your future. Confront the ghosts of the past, let go, forgive what needs to be forgiven and move on with life.
  • Accept yourself: When you know yourself, your identity as an individual, you learn to accept yourself and even appreciate yourself for who you can be.
  • Improve: No one is perfect, there is always scope for improvement. Chalk out what you want to achieve and what you want to be in life. Focus on your goals and aspirations. Take up opportunities to learn new skills and get more exposure. Get busy, work on your goals. Activities like these help keep your emotional needs at bay.
  • Identify the reasons for your dependence: Understanding the root of your problem is half the problem solved. This should help you to start fixing what is lacking in yourself?
  • Cut yourself off: From people or situations that trigger your dependency. It is difficult, but it is the best way to start a new life.
  • Be yourself: Do not compromise your values or beliefs or even change them for someone else. You need to be convinced before you change anything in your life.
  • Stand up for your rights: If someone is abusive, find out how you can legally defend yourself. Even if you don’t have to use those means it is good to be aware and let the other people know you are aware.
  • Train yourself to be independent and reward: You also need to reward yourself even for your tiniest achievements. Do your chores on your own. It is okay if you are clumsy or make mistakes, you will soon master these tasks with a little more exposure. Be patient with yourself.
  • Believe in yourself: Do not wait for validation from others.
  • Make a journal on your achievements: record all those tasks you have been able to do on your own without having to take advice or guidance from others.
  • Records your moments of happiness: It is also imperative that you record your happiness as well as sadness. You need to note when you were happy and when you were sad, what made you happy and what made you sad.

You have a right to be happy. Give yourself permission to be happy. Happiness is only a state of mind. It is not dependent on people or circumstances. Take responsibility for yourself. You are not a product of your past, but you are what you think, do, and feel. It is up to you to be who you are as a person.  Take care of your emotions, keep your mind fit and your thoughts in check to ensure that your mind is fit and your body is healthy.

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