Take Care of Your Emotional HealthApril 11, 2013
Just like your physical health, your emotional health plays an important role in your life, in fact, the two are linked. If you suffer from many physical ailments, you are at a high risk for depression, and if you are depressed or overly stressed, you are more likely to suffer from physical ailments such as high blood pressure, insomnia and a weakened immune system. There are actions you can take to improve your emotional health.
First, you should be familiar with resources in your area that are available for mental health. Many employers, schools and religious organizations have or provide a referral to a counselor. Your primary-care physician is also a great resource for information and referrals to mental health professionals. Counseling isn’t just for the depressed, it is an effective tool that will increase your awareness on how to handle the problems, stressors or losses that are inevitable in life. The World Health Organization defines mental health as "a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community".
Aside from counseling, here are a few tips that can help keep you emotionally healthy:
Connect with others. Surround yourself with friends and family that are supportive. Avoid others who put you down or make you feel negative about yourself or your life.
Do what you love, and involve others. While work and keeping a home can take up most of your time, it is crucial you find time to do things you enjoy, and enjoying activities with others can bring a sense of connection, team work and belonging. If you love to read, join a book club. Always wanted to meditate and get fit? Participate in a yoga class; if you love art- take an art class. All are great ways to unwind and connect, bring a friend along or enjoy making new ones!
Help others. Every day we should challenge ourselves. When we succeed, it brings pride and accomplishment. Helping others succeed has the same effect. Visit elders in a nursing home or head up a local food drive. By helping others we feel good about our actions, which is great medicine for our emotional health!
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