The ways we react to stressors tell us how we feel emotionally. In times of struggle, if you’re already in a tough place, coping may be difficult. But it doesn’t have to be. By practicing emotional wellness, we can utilize the tools we need in order to cope.
October is Emotional Wellness Month. It’s a great time to pause and reflect on your own feelings, coping skills, and mindfulness. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can learn how to observe emotional wellness month below.
What is an Overdose?
An overdose is the result of a person ingesting a toxic amount of a substance such as alcohol, medications, illegal drugs, or other substances. This can seriously impact the regular function of the body, causing symptoms like nausea, vomiting, loss of consciousness, difficulty breathing, and even death.
What is Emotional Wellness?
Emotional wellness is the ability to manage the stresses of life and adapt to change both positive and negative with healthy coping mechanisms. An emotionally healthy person can deal with life’s challenges without turning to substances or harmful behaviors.
According to Dr. Mark Lerner, chairman of the National Center for Emotional Wellness, taking care of a person’s health involves a lot more than preventing illness or treating sick patients. Awareness of uncomfortable emotions like anxiety, fear, sadness, and depression can help patients regain a sense of control over their lives. Lerner’s advice to focus on emotional wellness is more commonly shared with healthcare providers, but everyday people can learn from him as well.
Empower yourself and prioritize your emotional well-being with strategies and tools that address your thoughts and feelings. Painful emotions can affect how you function. However gaining awareness of your emotions and learning how to process them can minimize difficulties, keep you functioning, and increase your autonomy.
How to Maintain Your Emotional Wellness?
Emotional well-being doesn’t just keep your emotions healthy, it also affects everyday life. Emotional well-being means you can function and carry out everyday tasks. Conversely, poor emotional wellness can impact your physical health, increase blood pressure, and weaken the immune system, thus making you susceptible to illness.
Given the impact of emotional well-being on both day-to-day life and your physical health overall, it makes sense to work on staying healthy mentally. But knowing that you should have good emotional wellness doesn’t mean you know how.
According to the National Institutes of Health’s Emotional Wellness Toolkit, you can keep your emotional health high by using 6 strategies.
- Build resilience, by learning healthy ways to cope with emotional difficulties and draw from resources in your community.
- Reduce stress, by learning to manage it in a healthy way.
- Be mindful, by being aware of your body, emotions, and everything happening around you in the present.
- Get quality sleep, by taking steps to make sure that your sleep is actually restful.
- Cope with loss, by learning healthy ways to deal with the passing of a loved one.
- Strengthen social connections, by reaching out to friends, family, partners, and neighbors.
In other words, you can increase your emotional wellness by taking good care of yourself and recognizing your needs. If you are isolating yourself from loved ones, struggling with low energy and little sleep, feeling irritable and hopeless, neglecting hygiene and personal care, and dealing with lower energy than usual, your emotional health needs some attention.
And what better time to take care of yourself than during Emotional Wellness Month?
How to Observe Emotional Wellness Month
This October, spend some time getting in touch with your emotions. Observing Emotional Wellness Month can be as easy as pausing a moment to assess your feelings. Spend this month practicing mindfulness and taking care of yourself using the best methods you know how
Why not take a moment to work on each of the six strategies for improving emotional health?
For example, in order to build resilience, you could develop healthy physical habits. Do you lead an active lifestyle? Do you like to eat healthy food? How well do you sleep? Pause to assess these areas, and see if there are any changes that you can make. A combination of healthy eating, regular physical activity, and quality sleep, can improve your physical and mental health dramatically Giving you the resilience to face life’s unexpected challenges.
“When stress in the body lasts for a long time, it becomes a condition called chronic stress.”
How about stress in your life? While stress in the body can be helpful when you need a rush of energy, it shouldn’t last for a long time. When it does, it becomes a condition called chronic stress. Chronic stress isn’t healthy at all. To better deal with stress this October, make sure to schedule time for relaxation. Regularly participating in a mindful form of relaxation, like yoga, meditation, or breath work can help the body regulate stress.
For mindfulness, try to be more aware of your body. Examine it mentally, taking note of all of the sensations. Are you feeling a little pain? A little hungry? Or are you content? You could also enjoy a stroll and notice the world around you. By being more present, you can improve your emotional wellness.
Don’t neglect your sleep habits. Do you have a consistent schedule? How late do you stay up on electronics? You may even be engaging in something called bedtime procrastination, also known as revenge bedtime procrastination, during which you delay sleep in response to stress or a lack of free time during the day.
While you may want to stay up late to have the fun you couldn’t get during the day, this won’t help you long-term. Instead, consider fixing up your sleep habits so they are conducive to a calm sleep environment. A consistent sleep schedule, coupled with limited electronic use before bed will significantly improve your emotional health.
Emotional Wellness is also about learning to cope with grief. If you’ve lost someone recently, don’t ignore your feelings or needs. Reach out to friends or find a grief support group to help. Whatever you do, it’s important to avoid bad habits such as smoking, drinking, or using drugs. Be patient with yourself. The city of Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor can grief dissolve. It will take a little time to heal emotionally.
A great way to observe Emotional Wellness Month is to spend time with your loved ones. As it turns out, connections to other people can improve our emotional and physical health. Build strong relationships. You could join clubs, take classes, volunteer in your community, or travel to different places to meet new people. Spending time with others in healthy social settings is sure to positively impact your overall emotional wellness.
Stay Well With Never Alone Recovery
By practicing emotional wellness, you can be ready to cope with anything life throws at you. If you’re struggling with substance abuse, there’s no shame in asking for help. With drug rehab placement and free recovery support, Never Alone Recovery has the resources to help you. Follow along at our blog to learn more about how we could help.