Have you ever stopped to think about your emotional health? Your emotions play a crucial role in your life, and they affect how we behave, think, and interact with others.
Taking care of your emotional health is a vital part of living a purposeful, fulfilling, and happy life.
But what does looking after your emotional health actually mean?
It is our ability to recognize and cope with all of our emotions — both the positive and the negative. Happiness, sadness, anger, fear, anxiety and joy. We give such a priority to our physical health, however it is just as important to be aware of how we are feeling emotionally as well, and create our own unique tool-box that we can use when required.
Building your emotional tool-box is a continuous process. Try out new techniques and strategies so that you can find the ones that work the best for you. Like trying out different sports and exercise programs, what works for you one day, may not be the right one later on. We all experience and process emotions differently, which is why it is essential to create your tool-box based on what you have tried that works for you.
An emotional tool-box is a collection of tools and strategies that you can use to support your own emotional well-being. It is like a tool-box that a tradesperson uses for different tasks. The same can be for our own unique tool-box that is created for the roller coaster of ups and downs in life.
With a full tool-box you are looking after your emotional well-being and setting yourself up with the ability to handle life’s stresses, changes and challenging times. You have the incredible power to manage your emotions effectively.
Start your emotional tool-box by adding in some go-to’s that allow you to be in the flow. Being in the flow is when you are in the present moment. It could be painting, dancing, hiking, surfing, reading or similar. Add these activities to your emotional tool-box.
Notice your stress levels in your life. Everyone feels stressed from time to time and can be a positive sign by giving you a rush of energy when it’s needed most. However, if stress occurs over days, weeks or months it becomes chronic stress. To manage stress, add to your emotional tool-box prioritizing enough sleep each night, daily regular exercise (even just 30 minutes a day can give you a mood boost), and set priorities for yourself of what needs to be done today, and what can wait. Learn to set your boundaries for yourself and say no.
Then add in mindfulness practices that work for you. Mindfulness is bringing your attention to what is happening within yourself as well as around you, with awareness and without judgment. You are observing your thoughts, feelings, your sensations and being fully aware of your surroundings. Meditation, deep breathing, journaling, gratitude practices are also excellent for releasing negative energy, and creating clarity and calm. Even just using a breathing practice such as breathe in through your nose for a count of four, hold for seven and exhale out for a count of eight for four rounds is proven to have so many benefits.
If you have fewer negative emotions and are able to bounce back from difficult situations you have resilience. Build resilience with your emotional tool-box by looking at problems from a different angle as a growth opportunity.
You also might like to build a support network of trusted friends or family that lift you up, are positive, understanding, and able to guide you when you need a hand.
How will you build your unique emotional tool-box today?
Heading through life with a tool-box that is full of proven techniques that work for you means that you are looking after your emotional wellbeing and ready to tackle whatever life may throw at you!
Meet Our Contributor — Heidi Horne
Heidi Horne is a powerful speaker, mindset specialist, mindfulness coach and author. She brings over 17 years experience, an in-depth knowledge and contagious passion for mindfulness, resilience and positive mindset to the stage to ignite any audience — from the corporate stage, to school auditoriums, and into community events. Learn more about Heidi and her work here.