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Do you need to improve your emotional health
We all like to think that we have a pretty good handle on our psychological health. Everyone gets annoyed now and again. And everyone has periods where they’re sad, or anxious, or lonely, or overwhelmed.
But our lives themselves can be a cause of poor health. It’s just that we’ve come to accept how our lives are, and we often don’t really think about it. And finding ways to improve your emotional health is extremely important to your general health.
The promise that never came
Our society in general is overworked, overstressed, and too focused on things that don’t support good psychological well-being.
Who remembers back in the 90’s (or maybe it was the 00’s, I’m getting older now and my memory is slipping a bit 😉 ) when we were told that ‘within 10 years, workplaces would be run primarily by robots’ and ‘the current workforce will have so much free time, they won’t know what to do with themselves’?
I guess they misjudged that a bit 🙂
But, there are simple ways that can help you to decrease the daily stress in your life, which in turn helps to improve your emotional health.
For example, being proactive and doing things that foster good mental health can be a powerful way to enrich the quality of your day-to-day life.
So, what are some of these things you can do?
Tip Number 1:
I know this one’s been done to death, but getting regular exercise really is a great way to improve your emotional health, and indeed your entire mental health.
But, don’t get caught up in the thought that exercise has to be formal or strenuous. There’s absolutely no need to go to the gym, or pay for a personal trainer.
Just go for a walk every day, or go swimming. Even walking the dog, or cycling will do the trick. Anything that gets your body moving and your heart rate up.
Exercising releases endorphins and endorphins makes you feel great, relaxed, and at ease. The better you feel physically, the better you’ll feel psychologically, too.
Tip Number 2:
Interact with other people. Simply having positive and healthy relationships with other people can play a huge part in your emotional and psychological health. And, as a bonus, it’ll help keep you from feeling lonely.
If you tend to stay at home most of the time, especially with many people working form home at the moment you can quickly become lonely and start feeling depressed.
So, if this is you, maybe offer to help a charity foundation, or at a nursing home?
Just spending a few minutes having a conversation with someone who’s otherwise feeling lonely can give them a huge boost. They often just want someone to talk to. To speak with someone who listens and cares.
Helping someone in need is also a great way to improve your emotional health and boost the way you feel about yourself. And it’s a great way to meet other people that are also caring and giving.
So, make the effort to get out of the house and interact with other people.
Tip Number 3:
Challenge yourself often. Clearly, having too much stress in your life can be a problem. But, so too can not having any. There’s a huge difference between negative stress and positive stress. And positive stress, helps us to grow.
An example of positive stress is for example, a challenge that makes us reach outside of our comfort zone, in return for a positive outcome.
It helps us stay sharp. It helps us to grow as individuals and it stops us being bored and unfulfilled with our lives. So, if your life doesn’t have any challenges, then go create some!
Start by setting a goal, then commit to achieving it. When you overcome challenges and reach a goal, you’ll get a rush of excitement from that accomplishment.
Tip Number 4:
Try to create some time each day for an enjoyable activity. It doesn’t matter what that activity is, as long as you’re doing it simply because you enjoy it.
For you, it could be going to the cinema, or getting a massage. It might even be something as simple as playing with your kiddos or reading a book.
Whatever it is for you, as long as you’re doing something for you, it meets the criteria. Make room for some ‘me time’.
Tip Number 5:
Practice forgiveness. Holding on to anger and grudges accomplishes nothing. The person you’re angry isn’t angry. They’re not stressed about the situation they caused.
The only person anger hurts, is the person feeling angry. And it puts you in a vicious mental cycle that degrades your sense of well-being. Every second you hold onto your anger makes you more angry, so more unhappy.
Try to take things as a lesson learned (I know it’s REALLY difficult in the beginning) and move on, instead of dwelling on the things that happened in the past that you can’t change.
Tip Number 6:
Enjoy some quiet time. Our brains are restless and they never stop working. They’re constantly thinking, predicting, analysing and remembering. Even when you’re sleeping, you mind is constantly working.
Things like meditation can really help to slow your mind and give you a period of calm. There can be a few teething problems when you’re first starting out with meditation, but there’s plenty of help available, and with practice you’ll get there.
Improve your emotional health – Recap
To give you a quick overview of the points mentioned, here’s a quick recap of the basics…
- Get some regular exercise.
- Give your time to others.
- Challenge yourself often.
- Do something enjoyable every day.
- Practice forgiveness.
- Learn how to quiet your mind.
I’d like to finish with a few recommendations. These aren’t so much ideas for things to do, but more thoughts to take away and remember.
The first thing, is to try to learn how to deal with any stress effectively. By effectively, I mean in a way that’s not harmful.
For example… We often have ways of dealing with our stress that seem effective. But in reality, they fail to address the cause of the stress.
The biggest offender is comfort eating, but eating won’t solve the stressful problem, it’ll just make you fat, or give you ‘brain freeze’. So, seek positive solutions instead.
If things become overwhelming for you, seek some help. That doesn’t mean you have to see a counsellor, or therapist if you don’t want to. Talking with your family or friends can be just as effective in many scenarios.
Everyone has struggles and sometimes we just can’t do it all on our own. Asking for help is not a weakness. In fact, it shows strength. Because you acknowledge that you can’t do it on your own, and you show the strength of character to reach out to someone who can help you.
Keeping a journal can be extremely helpful when you’re trying to improve your emotional health.
Writing down your thoughts on paper after a long, hard day is therapeutic. It releases stress and tension, and can give you an entirely different perspective. You can be as blunt as you want, without worrying about upsetting anyone, because it is for your eyes only.
You can use it as a punching bag, when you’ve had a bad day. And you can use it to share your excitement and joy on good days.
And finally, emotional and mental health, are both critical to your overall health. If any part of your health is suffering, it’s much more challenging to be effective at anything.
Every aspect of your life can suffer. So, use these tips to address and improve your emotional health, and indeed, your entire psychological health.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments.