Take Care of Your Emotions
According to Mayo Clinic women are twice as likely as men to develop emotional illnesses such as depression and anxiety. This is because in addition to the consistent demands and stresses of life, women also have natural life events such as pregnancy, menstrual cycles and menopause that cause their hormones to fluctuate involuntarily. Unstable or fluctuating hormones can lead to fluctuating emotions. Taking stock of your emotions is one step toward a life of spiritual, physical and emotional wholeness. How healthy are your emotions? Do you know? Emotions are as real as your arms and legs and as powerful as your heart and lungs. Just like your physical body, your emotions need regular care. They need protection from fatigue and they need check-ups (which are occasional reality checks to be sure they're rooted in the right truth). No matter how busy you are or what’s going on in your life, you owe it to yourself to put nurturing good emotional health at the top of your personal priority list. One approach to nurturing good emotional health is developing a willingness to identify how you feel and why you feel. 1. Identify how you feel and be bold enough to say (even if it’s just to yourself), "I'm happy," "I'm angry," "I'm sad," "I'm frustrated" or "I'm excited." Label how you feel and don't ever ignore or dismiss your emotions on any issue. 2. Analyze why you feel the way you feel. Try to mentally step away from the situation for a moment and ask yourself hard questions like: are your emotions justified, are they rooted in reality and truth; are they spot on or are they way off base? This reflection may take a while, but it's important for you to take the time to measure the validity of why you feel. 3. Decide the best way to respond to your emotions. Your response can be outward: prayer, talking to someone, doing an action, confronting a problem or facing a fear. Your response can be inward: talking to yourself, soothing or calming your emotions or relaxing. Your emotions need the same level of attention and same urgency that you would have for an injured leg or chest pains. You deserve to be whole: spiritually, physically and emotionally. You are worth every effort to make wholeness a reality. Therefore, I challenge you to make a bold declaration right now that your emotions matter and then make the commitment to identify, measure and properly respond to them. Develop a lifestyle of being in tune with your emotions, not only with how you feel but also why you feel and then respond accordingly. Nurturing good emotional health is a necessary part of nurturing a better you.