Do you often feel like you are out of control?
Do you get angry quickly or often feel bad about how you treated someone else?
There are many indicators that can tell you if your physical health is suffering, but how do you know when your emotional health is low?
What are the warning signs to look out for when it comes to the emotional wellness of yourself or your loved ones?
Here are six crucial signs of poor emotional health to keep watch for.
Isolation or Social Withdrawal
If you’re usually the type who likes to be around other people and you find that, suddenly, you would much rather be by yourself than deal with other people, your emotional health may be suffering.
When you struggle with your own emotional issues, it is often challenging to be around people who have intense emotions or are also going through a hard time. If you are insecure about your relationship with yourself, you may not want to seek out relationships with other people, either.
If you find that you are spending more time alone and are turning away opportunities to be with others, your emotional health may need some attention.
When you feel bad about yourself and are struggling emotionally, you may think that you do not deserve to be loved, and therefore no one wants to be with you. Other reasons you may withdraw from loved ones include regret, shame, embarrassment, insecurity, or being overwhelmed by your own emotional needs.
Never underestimate the power of a good therapy session!
One of the most common forms of self-sabotage is to blame other people for your own mistakes or failures.
“I broke this plate because you made me angry.”
“I ate a whole cake by myself. It’s the dog’s fault.”
Blaming is a sign that you have not accepted responsibility for your own emotions, behaviors, or choices, and that you lack the self-awareness necessary to process how you feel about your situation.
It is so much easier to lay blame at someone else’s feet than do the hard work needed to improve yourself, isn’t it?
When you lack emotional awareness and regulation, a typical behavior is to blame others for your own problems or situation. Those with poor psychological health struggle with personal awareness and may not see how their own choices or emotions are influencing the adverse outcomes in their lives.
If you find yourself consistently blaming other people for the ills in your life, then it may be time to focus more on boosting your emotional well-being.
Does it feel like you get into more than your fair share of arguments on a daily basis? That, no matter what, other people just seem very unhelpful or purposefully bothersome to you?
If you find that you get into a lot of arguments, whether it is with friends, coworkers, family, or even complete strangers, then this is a sign that you are not processing your emotions well.
When you keep things inside, the emotions will eventually manifest as anger. It is the same when you are not attuned to others’ feelings – you may find yourself frustrated with their behaviors.
Anger is an emotion that is often used to cover up other feelings.
If you find yourself lashing out in anger, arguing, or otherwise feeling mad a lot, then your emotional stability and health are lacking. Emotional health means being able to process and deal with your emotions effectively, not allowing them to control your actions.
Anger is a good cover-up for other negative feelings that you may not want to examine too carefully, including disappointment, fear, shame, and self-loathing.
Ask yourself what you are really angry about? And does this person you are arguing with really play a role in that anger?
Regretting Your Behavior
How often do you think to yourself, “I really wish I hadn’t done that. What is WRONG with me that I can’t control myself?”
When you are not healthily dealing with emotions, it can lead to decisions that do not support good health or that harm your relationships with others. When your emotional health is lacking, your emotions are more likely to bubble up or burst to the surface and influence your behavior, making you do things you would not do under more rational thought.
Being Confused by Others’ Emotions
If you struggle with emotional health, it can be difficult to understand or deal with other people’s emotions, too.
If you are often confused about why other people react the way they do or are annoyed that someone has an emotional reaction to a situation, it is a sign that your own emotional wellness is not that great.
Empathy and understanding of how others feel is an integral part of emotional health, and if you are always exasperated about how other people feel, then you need to work on this vital part of wellness.
When you are not in touch with your own emotions, it makes it difficult for you to really get how others are feeling, either.
If you notice that your behaviors seem to provoke negative reactions from others consistently, the problem may not be them. And if you are always asking what is wrong with others, then you are not picking up on the cues that should lead you to grasp their emotions.
Trouble in Relationships
Whether it is friends, family, or romantic partners, if you find that people are always leaving or finding ways to spend less time with you, that is a big red flag that you need to improve your emotional wellness.
When others see you suffering but not dealing with your emotions, or when you are emotionally unpredictable, it makes it hard for others to spend time with you. Cultivating and maintaining relationships is a sign of emotional health, and if you lack in this area, then working on your own emotional wellness is a significant first step.
Emotional health is crucial for maintaining healthy relationships. If you find that you have difficulty keeping friends or partners in your life, then your emotional health could use some attention.
Emotional health means that you understand how others feel and can respond in appropriate ways, and when you can’t do these things, people will leave.
In addition to those listed, other signs that your poor emotional health could be affecting your behavior include:
- Lacking respect or desire to listen to other people’s ideas or perspectives
- Living in denial about the circumstances or state of your life
- Being overly critical of other people regularly
- You try to intimidate or threaten other people to get what you want
- You harm yourself by cutting, starving, or binging
- You cannot handle when other people are emotionally upset
- You have a substance abuse problem or feel the need to use substances to escape your emotions
“If we lack emotional intelligence, whenever stress rises the human brain switches to autopilot and has an inherent tendency to do more of the same, only harder. Which, more often than not, is precisely the wrong approach in today’s world.” -Robert K. Cooper
These are just a few of the ways that your emotions can influence your decisions and behaviors. Any time you find yourself acting in a certain way and then later regretting it, there is a high probability that you allowed your emotions to make that decision for you, and you are lacking in emotional health. Paying attention to these types of red flags is essential for monitoring your emotional health and cultivating your personal well-being.
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