Emotional hygiene

Emotional health and mental wellness are always talked about less than they need to be. We aren’t often taught about how to take care of our emotional selves while we are growing up. It is not at fault to anyone that took part in our raising, it’s not even something we are taught as adults. Usually we happen to learn certain coping skills over the years that work most of the time but at times can be temporary or maladaptive. We have to learn how to take the time to recognize and address emotions, not just when they are strong, but in the everyday emotional experience. If we address the day-to-day emotional steps the bigger and stronger emotions will be easier to identify and attend to. 

We are always encouraged to go to the doctor when we aren’t feeling well, but we also need to remember that it’s not just important to pay attention to our physical selves but it’s equal or more important at times to pay attention to our mental-emotional selves. When we are having a physical problem we either address it, like ice for a swollen knee or go to the doctor to get other ideas and plans for treatment. We cannot just go and ice our brains when we feel like we are having some emotional inflammation, but we can address the discomfort, just like ice does when we put it on our knee. When we reach out for support we can also learn things to help reduce the possibility for inflammation in the future, as well as the steps to get through it quicker if it happens again. 

I don’t know about you all, but I have found some great, informative videos on TedTalks. I enjoy sharing them with people and groups to get us thinking about ourselves and how we can become the people that we want to be. A few years ago I found this video and was so excited to share it with my groups. I just love this video on Emotional First Aid. Dr. Guy Winch does such a great job discussing emotional hygiene and how wonderful it could be if we all started practicing it. Take a look and a listen below.

An end quote from the video:

“By taking action when you’re lonely, by changing your responses to failure, by protecting your self-esteem, by battling negative thinking, you won’t just heal your psychological wounds, you will build emotional resilience, you will thrive. A hundred years ago, people began practicing personal hygiene, and life expectancy rates rose by over 50 percent in just a matter of decades. I believe our quality of life could rise just as dramatically if we all began practicing emotional hygiene.”

Are you ready to start doing some emotional hygiene in your life?

Check out Dr. Winch’s book: https://amzn.to/3gpBGFQ