Life nowadays is full of stress and difficulties.
We are constantly on the go. This ongoing pressure of family, work, and society can become overwhelming.
That’s why we need to have strong emotional health! Emotional well-being helps us handle the pressure of everyday life healthily.
A common misconception about emotional health is that being emotionally well means always being happy.
But that’s not true at all!
Emotional wellness refers to proper emotional awareness, regulation, and coping skills.
Emotionally healthy people do feel stress, anxiety, and other negative emotions. They do, however, know how to control their negative feelings.
Deciphering emotional well-being is more complex than physical or nutritional health. There are no hard and fast rules to good emotional health.
Therefore, I have discussed emotional wellness, how it impacts you, signs of emotional well-being, and tips for improving your emotional health.
Want to live an emotionally healthy life? Here’s all that you’ll get to know about emotional well-being.
- What Is Emotional Health?
- Emotional Health vs. Mental Health
- Importance of Emotional Health
- Signs of Poor Emotional Health
- Signs of Good Emotional Health
- How to Improve Emotional Health
What Is Emotional Health?
Emotional health is your sense of well-being. It is how you think, feel, and cope with life events.
Also, emotional well-being is your capacity to recognize your own emotions as well as those of others.
Most importantly, it focuses on being in tune with your emotions. As a result, you can deal with emotions in a healthy way, whether they are positive or negative.
Being aware of your emotions and suitable coping mechanisms are significant parts of emotional well-being.
Poor emotional health can lead to declining physical and mental health. That’s not all, without emotional awareness and regulation, all sectors of your health will start to plunge.
So, emotional health is one’s ability to manage feelings and emotions appropriately.
Here’s an emotional health example.
Let’s say your boss told you today that you are losing your job in 2 weeks.
This situation will make anyone angry, frustrated, betrayed, and afraid. However, you will surely react negatively if your emotional health isn’t good.
It can look like lashing out at your boss or loved ones, leading to more pain.
On the other hand, if you have taken care of your emotional well-being, you will still feel negative emotions. However, you would be able to control your emotions and react calmly.
In both cases, you will feel the emotions the same way. But due to the state of emotional health, two significantly different emotional reactions are given.
Emotional Health vs. Mental Health
The terms emotional health and mental health are frequently used interchangeably. However, they have very different meanings.
For example, a mentally ill person can have good emotional health. Additionally, someone having poor emotional health can be mentally sound.
But they are intertwined in more ways than. For instance, mental illness can make your emotions run wild.
To work on your emotional health, first, you must learn to distinguish between these two aspects of health.
Here’s how emotional health differs from mental health:
|Emotional Health||Mental Health|
|Emotional well-being deals with matters of your heart, focusing on emotions and feelings.||On the other hand, mental health deals with your brain focusing on thoughts, decision-making, and behaviors.|
|Emotional health can decline from loss or traumatic life events.||Mental illness often occurs from a chemical imbalance in the brain or trauma.|
|Poor emotional awareness, regulation, or coping skills can also hinder your emotional health.||Hereditary issues or mind-altering drugs can cause chemical imbalances in the brain leading to poor mental health.|
|Sound emotional health allows you to manage and express emotions that arise from experiences and learning.||Good mental health is how well your brain processes and understands information & experiences.|
|Emotional well-being affects your emotional state, like your satisfaction or happiness.||Mental health affects your cognitive functions, leading to psychological or neurological disorders.|
So, taking care of both emotional and mental health is necessary. You can not work on one while ignoring the other.
Therefore, you should strive for emotional and mental well-being to lead a happy, healthy, and fulfilling life.
Learn more about mental well-being here – Mental health.
Importance of Emotional Health
Why should I focus on my emotional health? It’s just emotions. How important can it be?
To answer you, it is highly essential. In fact, working on your emotional health is equally important as caring for your physical well-being.
Here’s how emotional well-being impacts your overall health and well-being:
- Safeguards Physical Health
- Higher Resilience to Anxiety & Stress
- Forming Positive & Deep Relationships
- Improved Self-esteem
- High Energy Level
Safeguards Physical Health
Emotional health has strong ties to physical health. How?
Suffering from continuous stress, anxiety, grief, or other negative emotions can make you more vulnerable to physical illnesses.
Poor emotional health means you get stressed by all the small bumps in your daily life.
And continuous exposure to the stress hormone like cortisol can negatively impact your immune system.
As a result, you’re more likely to suffer from viral and bacterial diseases.
That’s not all, people with poor emotional well-being don’t know how to deal with negative emotions properly.
So, often they turn to harmful habits like smoking, drinking, or drugs to cope with emotions.
Unfortunately, these coping methods put your physical health at greater risk of cancer, heart disease, etc.
So, you must protect your emotional health to safeguard your physical health.
Higher Resilience to Anxiety & Stress
If you have good emotional health, life’s setbacks won’t be able to derail you.
Emotional well-being makes you capable of controlling your feelings and emotions better. Additionally, it increases your resilience to stress and anxiety.
So, you still feel all the negative emotions but control your reactions with more expertise.
Moreover, emotional well-being teaches you to manage both positive and negative emotions. As a result, you won’t get overwhelmed by everything that goes wrong in life.
Emotional soundness fosters resiliency, self-awareness, and an overall sense of well-being.
Forming Positive & Deep Relationships
Your emotional well-being decides how you interact with your friends, family, and colleagues.
When you are emotionally stable, you’ll find it much easier to relate to others.
In addition, having skills to manage your emotions allow you to empathize with people around you.
Therefore, good emotional health makes one kind and compassionate.
This also results in less conflict as you won’t vent your frustration on others.
All these positive behaviors allow you to form positive relationships. With growing emotional wellness, all your relationships seem more profound, meaningful, and fulfilling.
Your feelings, thoughts, and emotions influence how you feel about yourself.
Therefore, good emotional health helps you see and feel the best in yourself. In other words, it boosts your self-esteem.
Additionally, it decides how we receive and respond to feedback and criticism from others.
Emotional well-being improves our self-esteem and confidence. And having self-confidence is essential for succeeding in personal and professional life.
High Energy Level
Have you ever noticed that you feel more energized when you are emotionally well?
Yes, good emotional health brings positivity. And positivity makes you feel more focused and energized.
Nothing can bring you down when you are equipped with the skills to deal with emotions.
On the other hand, a lack of emotional well-being makes everything seem hopeless. Also, you’ll find yourself constantly tired and low on energy when struggling emotionally.
Signs of Poor Emotional Health
How to identify if you or someone close to you is emotionally struggling?
Emotional struggle can take on numerous looks. Here are some of the common signs of poor emotional health:
- Feeling tired all the time.
- Racing or paralyzing thoughts.
- Increased interpersonal conflicts.
- Feeling detached from friends and family.
- Frequently lashing out at loved ones.
- Lower energy even after proper rest.
- Overeating or not feeling like eating.
- Low self-esteem and confidence.
- Frequent high or low blood pressure.
- Increased smoking, drinking, or substance use.
- Not being able to sleep or sleeping way too much.
- Performance at work or school starts declining.
- Feeling irritated, guilty, hopeless, or worthless all the time.
How to Improve Emotional Health
Now you know what poor emotional health looks like. If you notice one or more signs in yourself, it’s time to start working on your emotional well-being.
Here are some tips for improving your emotional wellness:
- Be Aware of Your Emotions & Reactions
- Learn to Control Your Reactions
- Engage in Stress Reduction Activities
- Work on Improving Resilience
- Create & Maintain Positive Connections
- Avoid Negative Self-talks
- Take Care of Your Body
- Find Your Purpose in Life
- Know When to Get Help
Be Aware of Your Emotions & Reactions
First of all, start giving attention to your feelings and emotions. What makes you angry? What makes you sad?
And how do you react when you are sad, angry, stressed, or frustrated?
Learn to Control Your Reactions
Now that you know what triggers you, it’s time to act upon those discoveries.
Do you react properly to negative emotions or lash out uncontrollably?
If you do the latter, try controlling your reactions. Being aware of your responses and their consequences can be a guiding force in this aspect.
Engage in Stress Reduction Activities
Stress is the number one culprit in damaging our emotional health. So, try to reduce anxiety and stress as much as possible.
Engage in relaxing activities like meditation, yoga, journaling, or deep breathing.
Work on Improving Resilience
The higher your resilience, the faster you can bounce back from life’s challenges.
Resilience helps you control your negative emotions. Understand that all the struggles we face in life will eventually pass.
So, there’s no point in breaking down for the little bumps we face along the road.
Choose a Balanced Lifestyle
A balanced lifestyle can help to bring emotional stability. Therefore you should try these steps:
- Don’t overwork yourself.
- Do all things in moderation.
- Give yourself time to relax.
- Spend time with loved ones.
- Also, don’t eat too much or too little.
- Establish a balance between personal and work life.
Create & Maintain Positive Connections
Your relationships and connections with your partner, family, friends, and coworkers are significant.
No one can be emotionally sound while being isolated.
So, make spending time with your loved ones a priority. Start a conversation with your coworkers and your neighbors.
However, it’s important to remember your connections should bring you up, not pull you down.
So, focus on positive and fulfilling relationships while cutting out toxic people from your life.
Avoid Negative Self-talks
Next time you make a mistake, notice how you talk to yourself.
We tend to be really harsh on ourselves, even for the tiniest mistakes.
Negative self-talk can create a toxic cycle pulling you into emotional turmoil. Moreover, it promotes a negative mindset that harms your overall health.
Think about how you talk to your best friend when they make mistakes. Do you shout at them or make them feel worse?
You do not, do you? So, be kind to yourself. Encourage yourself to be better and console yourself when things go down.
Work on creating a positive mindset, and good emotional health will follow.
Take Care of Your Body
A sound mind needs a healthy body. So, prioritize your physical and nutritional health to improve your emotional wellness.
You can start by getting enough sleep every night. Did you know lack of sleep can reduce your emotional intelligence?
Additionally, sleeping helps us cope with the struggles of life and energizes us for new challenges.
Moreover, include 20 minutes of physical exercise in your daily routine. Physical activity releases oxytocin or the happy hormone. So, exercising is the fastest way to get out of a negative emotional cycle.
Apart from these, eat healthily, and participate in hobbies & community activities.
Lastly, avoid using drinking, smoking, or substance use as a coping mechanism.
Find Your Purpose in Life
It’s easier to get demotivated and hopeless when you don’t have a clear purpose in life.
On the other hand, people with sound purposeful health don’t get derailed by the problems that come along the way. Because they know it’s all part of reaching the end goal.
So, find your purpose and goals. In addition, celebrate the accomplishments no matter how trivial they are. Also, find things that bring fulfillment and inner peace.
Learn more about finding purpose in life from this article – Purposeful Health.
Know When to Get Help
Lastly, there are times when you’ll find it impossible to handle the emotional turmoil.
It’s okay. We are only humans, and sometimes sharing the burden with others is necessary.
Knowing when to reach out for help is vital to emotional wellness. So, if you are feeling overwhelmed, talk to a loved one.
Often we feel like we’ll burden close ones with our problems and hold everything in. In such cases, talk to a wellness counselor.
So many mental and emotional health care providers are out there waiting to help you. You only have to reach out.
Emotions and emotional health play a vital role in our overall well-being.
I understand opening up about emotions can seem scary. However, the reality is managing emotions is part of being human.
All of us have good days, bad days, and catastrophic days! Having good emotional health aids in reducing the burden on our minds and heart.
Moreover, emotional well-being helps improve your relationships with others and yourself.
So, make your emotional health a priority.