How to Improve Your Emotional Health
Having good emotional health will help better manage your reactions in stressful situations. Often, people focus on their physical health. They don’t see how important it is to maintain emotional balance to respond to challenging situations.
Emotional health, according to some authors, involves “the responsible management of feelings, thoughts, and behaviors. ” This definition implies being able to recognize everything we feel and think. Also, it means giving it a name, accepting it, and integrating it into our lives.
People with good mental health can control their feelings assertively. Also, they have good self-esteem, as well as personal relationships. However, not taking care of your mental health can lead to disorders like anxiety disorder or major depression, as some studies show.
This happens because sadness, anxiety, anger, or depression reach high levels of intensity over time, which causes behavior changes. Then, this leads people to forget healthy habits, which increases the risk of developing addictive behaviors. In addition, it can even put your health at risk.
So how can we improve our emotional health?
How to improve emotional health
According to the Instituto Superior de Estudios Psicológicos (the Spanish Higher Institute for Psychological Studies, or ISEP) having good emotional health causes an increase in general well-being. It’s important to understand that all emotions are valid since they all play a part in our lives.
Therefore, although we might think that some emotions are negative or undesirable, it’s important to learn to manage them properly, without trying to repress them. Then, this translates into better emotional health and less likely to suffer stress, anxiety, and depression, among other disorders.
What can we do to improve our mental health?
Actually, there are small adjustments that help train our minds to better manage our emotions. Next, we’ll give you some general tips.
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Recognize your emotions
Learn to recognize your emotions, and figure out what makes you feel frustrated, angry, or sad. As we mentioned, you shouldn’t try to repress them, but rather accept that they’re a part of you. You’re experiencing them for a reason.
Express your feelings
Expressing your feelings goes along with good emotional health. If you feel uncomfortable and this causes tension, it could cause problems. Whether you’re at work or at home, it’s important to learn how to express your feelings appropriately.
Think first, then act
This is necessary, since intense emotions can make us act out, and you might regret it later. To avoid this, it’s best to think about the consequences before doing anything.
One way to do this is to write down your feelings. This gives you enough time and space to analyze them better.
Use relaxation techniques to help your emotional health
As stated in the journal Complementary Therapies in Medicine, meditation techniques are resources with positive effects in stress management. Therefore, it’s a good idea to use strategies like mindfulness, meditation, yoga, or others.
Check this out: Five Mindfulness Exercises for Anxiety
Take a break
Living a fast-paced life is one of the reasons why we are constantly in states of stress and anxiety. Therefore, it’s good to take time for yourself, live calmly, and enjoy the simple things.
Do things that make you feel calm, fulfilled, and happy.
Get enough rest to help your emotional health
Poor quality of sleep, added to a hectic lifestyle, considerably affects your mood. Due to this, it’s important to sleep well, at least 7 hours without interruptions. Also, take breaks during the day to rest.
Make positive connections with others
Try your best to get away from toxic relationships. If you surround yourself with people that build you up, your emotional health improves dramatically. In addition, you also need to focus on positive things and try not to complain too much (or be around others who complain too much!).
Positive relationships also arise when you do good things to help others from a place of genuine desire.
Learn new things
Stay curious about the world around you. You can learn new languages, start a new book, sign up for a course, and many more options.
Every human being is different, and we all have different needs. However, to be healthy, it’s very important to work on our emotional health, too.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Bisquerra Alzina, R., & Pérez Escoda, N. (2007). Las competencias emocionales. Educación XX1.
- Bisquerra Alzina, R. (2003). Educación emocional y competencias básicas para la vida. Revista de Investigación Educativa, RIE.
- Cano-Vindel, A., & Miguel-Tobal, J. (2001). Emociones y salud. Ansiedad Estrés.
- Velázquez, S. (2013). Salud Física y emocional. Programa Institucional Actividades De Educacion Para Una Vida Saludable.
- Gardiner P, Sadikova E, Filippelli AC, et al. Stress Management and Relaxation Techniques use among underserved inpatients in an inner city hospital. Complement Ther Med. 2015;23(3):405–412. doi:10.1016/j.ctim.2015.03.006