We all know the importance of looking after our physical health. Exercise, eat well, use sunscreen; the ways in which we look after our bodies are well researched. But what about our emotional health? It is true that maintaining physical health can greatly impact how we feel psychologically, however emotional health is something that should be addressed within its self.
Well-being can be described as how balanced and confident we feel. Various factors from both the past and present make up our emotional well-being. The circumstances which we grew up in as well as the knowledge and skills we have acquired through life are factors from the past that can have had an impact on our emotional health. It is how we use these skills however that affects how we feel in the present.
For example we might have learned as a child that we should be nice to others, but it is whether we put this knowledge to use which will affect how we feel today. Through this experience we have learned that being nice to others and them being nice in return gives a general sense of happiness and contentment.
Life can be difficult for everyone at times. Financial stress, family breakdowns and death are inevitable issues in most of our lives. An emotionally healthy person is not one whose life is void of difficulties, but one that has the capabilities to manage through these times.
Being balanced isn’t as simple as not being depressed or mentally ill, it is being able to bounce back from difficult times. Even an emotionally sound person can grieve or feel sadness from time to time, and expressing these basic human emotions appropriately contributes hugely to overall psychological health. It is the ability to express emotion and sadness, and then move on from it which is important.
Coping with stress and managing hardship is not a skill we are born with. Emotional intelligence is something we develop and grow to understand. From our own encounters, as well as learning vicariously through others we are able to understand what makes us happy or sad and how to deal with these emotions.
Emotionally level people are able to feel meaning and purpose in their life and their activities, and tend to lead lives that are balanced between work, play and relaxation. Emotionally healthy individuals tend to perform better academically and at work, report stronger bonds between friends, family and relationships and generally make for more contented and well rounded individuals.
Emotional and mental health is not something that should be taken for granted. Nor is it something that is necessarily going to stay the same throughout your life. If you feel generally happy, finding ways of maintaining the balance in your life would be a beneficial activity.
Counting your blessings and not letting small matters have a big impact are two ways to start. If you know your emotions are a bit up and down, take small steps to improve how you feel. This could be leading a healthier lifestyle, taking up a new hobby or being more organized in order to avoid stress.