Protecting and nurturing your emotional health is just as important as safeguarding your physical well-being. Being emotionally healthy means you are able to understand and regulate your own emotions while also being able to recognize and empathize with the feelings of others.
There are many habits you can engage in regularly, some every day and some now and then, that can help you maintain your mental and emotional health in peak condition.
Here are 40 of our favorites.
1. Be More Mindful
Becoming more mindful benefits your emotional health in many ways. Ever made that connection? First, it helps you to become more aware of your feelings, which means you can better identify them as well as their possible source or trigger. Being more mindful also keeps you focused more on the present, which eliminates dwelling on the past or worrying about the future. Engaging in mindful meditation or using mindfulness practices can help you to gain control over your emotions and improve your emotional well-being.
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2. Rethink Failure
When you experience failure, it can distort how you think about yourself and your future goals. But, when you learn to think of failure differently, as a learning opportunity instead of a setback, you can learn a great deal and stop allowing it to control your emotions. Failure is feedback. It tells you where you need to improve in order to succeed next time. Changing how you think about this is critical for learning experience and can improve your emotional health tremendously during times of struggle.
3. Keep a Journal
Journaling is an excellent way to record your thoughts, to focus on your gratitude, and to release emotions rather than keep them bottled up. When you write about your feelings, it improves your mental health and allows you to reflect back later on things to help you see your progress or identify unhealthy patterns that are holding you back. Journaling can help reduce anxiety, too. Get into a daily habit of journaling to enjoy better emotional health.
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4. Eat a Healthy Diet
Most people do not really believe that what they eat can influence how they feel, but there is a strong connection between the two. When you eat healthy foods, you are more likely to feel energetic and alert. Similarly, when you eat unhealthy foods filled with unhealthy fats, sugar, and other processed ingredients, you will feel sluggish, more anxious and depressed.
Eating healthy food improves your overall physical health too, which adds to strengthening your mental and emotional health. Those who eat a diet high in sugar, fats, and processed foods are more likely to be overweight, suffer from depression, or experience other problems with their wellness, as mentioned previously.
5. Get the Sleep You Need
Your body needs sleep, and so does your mind. When you get consistent, quality rest, your health will improve, your mind will be clearer, and you will be better able to deal with stress and process your emotions.
Start by establishing a bedtime routine that ensures you go to bed at the same time every night. Ban screentime for at least one hour before you go to sleep and focus on relaxing thoughts as soon as you lay down to rest. Restful sleep improves your outlook and ability to handle whatever life throws your way.
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6. Look for Ways to Learn from Loss
When you experience emotionally stressful events, such as a death, the end of a relationship, or some kind of trauma, it can be helpful to look for meaning or purpose to these experiences. This will take time, but it can be useful in the long term for moving on from emotionally traumatizing circumstances.
Meaning may come in the form of a new appreciation for certain things or people, finding strength or talents you did not know you had before, or for connecting you with people you have come to love.
7. Get Feedback from Others
When it comes to your emotional health, you are not always the most impartial judge of how well you are at the moment. Asking for feedback from those whom you trust can be helpful for identifying areas where you could improve or grow.
While you may not always like what you hear, it can be helpful to know how others perceive your emotional health and to know if you are meeting their emotional needs, as well. And just because they offer feedback does not mean you have to accept it, either. But knowing is the first step.
8. Limit Your Social Media Use
Rather than helping us feel more connected, social media has a way of producing negative emotions for many people. Those who spend the most amount of time on social media are more likely to be depressed or have anxiety.
Limiting your use of these sites each day can help you focus on what is essential in your daily existence and leave you more satisfied with your life. Your emotional health will benefit more from socializing in person and from not indulging in mostly fake perspectives of the lives of others.
9. Let Go of Unhealthy Relationships
The people in your life can have a profound influence on your emotional and mental health. Therefore, the more time you spend with people who are psychologically unhealthy or who trigger negative emotions in you, the more likely you are to struggle with your own feelings.
Make a list of all the relationships in your life and how they affect you.
If you find people who consistently make you feel bad or who bring nothing but negative energy or emotions to your life, it is time to cut them out completely or limit your exposure to them as much as possible.
10. Open Up
On the flip side of this, when you find people that you genuinely love and trust, it is essential to share your emotions with them and open up when you are struggling. Sharing your feelings with others can help you release them, instead of holding them inside, and it can be helpful to hear others’ perspectives on things that are bothering you. You might also learn about things that your loved ones are struggling with, as well, which can bring you closer together.by