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October 17 2021 5:38 AM ˚

How emotional wellness can help drive well-being

emotional wellness
The National Center of Emotional Wellness defines emotional awareness as an understanding and acceptance of your emotions, and your ability to manage effectively through challenges and change. (Photo: Unsplash)
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Individual well-being is crucial to people in order to live a long and happy life. Within well-being there are many well-known aspects involved such as physical and mental health and wellness. Although these aspects are considered to be the most important, there are many smaller subsets to physical and mental wellness that can have negative or positive impacts. اضافة اعلان

Emotional wellness goes by many names and has a great affect on mental health. Emotional wellness, according to the National Center of Emotional Wellness, is defined as an awareness, understanding, and acceptance of your emotions, and your ability to manage effectively through challenges and change. 

Essentially, emotional wellness is our subjective perception of events, and our subsequent processing of the feeling feels associated with those events, especially negative events. We tend to learn this skill during childhood development and therefore, based on our upbringings, our processing skill can be skewed. Fortunately, much like any other skill, improvements can be made with practice. 

Factors affecting our emotional wellness

In our lives we face many obstacles, and we fight in order to lead happy and comfortable lives. Pain and suffering is nearly unavoidable and we must learn instead to filter and process our emotions. The factors that can affect our emotional wellness can be external or internal. External events on a global scale can still cause emotions within individuals who are not directly affected.

In today’s information age we can receive news internationally within minutes, often leading us to learn of tragic incidences multiple times a day. Humans are extremely empathetic creatures; someone else’s suffering can cause us our own. 

Furthermore, external factors that more directly impact our lives can have even more serious implications. Factors such as economic struggle, ailments, or the death of a loved one are all examples of struggle and pain in our lives that we are likely to face. We must be able to process these events in a healthy manner in order to continue to live our lives as best we can. 

Additionally, there are many more internal factors that can affect our emotional wellness. The most common factor is stress. Although stress is a normal part of life, overwhelming stress or the inability to manage stress properly can negatively impact our lives, primarily our emotional wellness. 

Proper stress management helps develop resilience which, in essence, helps us filter out mundane and day to day stress to help reduce the stress of big events such as deadlines.

Another significant internal factor for some is communication and assertiveness. Communication is supposed to allow for effective conveyance of our thoughts and ideas. Humans are also extremely social beings and the inability to do so can cause great distress. We need to communicate in order to form bonds and communities — without it, it can lead to feelings of isolation and ostracism, which then may lead to depression or anxiety. 

As for assertiveness, there are individuals that feel anxiety or guilt when asking or responding to others. People who lack assertiveness find difficulty in saying no to requests or asking for things without feeling like a burden to others. The negative impact of this ultimately leads to poor relationships. 

There are many other internal factors that can negatively impact our emotional wellness. Whether they be from psychological considerations such as poor body image or they be from poor life habits such as sleeping too much or too little, the end result may cause physical or mental manifestations such as depression, anxiety, high blood pressure, or even ulcers.

How to manage or improve emotional wellness

There are many ways to manage and improve emotional wellness, but two main fundamentals are the most important. The first is confronting stress in an appropriate manner. Simply having stress does not result in negative implications for emotional wellness. In fact, people often need stress as a motivator to complete tasks, ultimately helping maintain focus. It is the internalization of stress that dictates whether it has a positive, neutral, or negative impact. 

The proper internalization of stress may be difficult for people to change once later in life, in which case coping with stress is a healthy alternative. There are many different ways to cope with stress and choosing a method of coping should be individualized and adapt to your life. 

Holistically speaking, there are two forms of stress management that should be in place to be most effective, one of which is a routine. A routine for management serves the purpose of helping you unwind over an extended period of time. A routine can be anything from yoga or meditation to walking or basic exercise and can be done daily or even once a week. 

Additionally, the second form serves the purpose of helping you cope with immediate stresses. Techniques like breathing, reflecting on positive memories, or listening to your favorite music can help reduce stress in the moment.

The second important fundamental is building and developing emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is the process in which you are able to regulate your own emotions and be more in control of them despite your surroundings. Emotional intelligence is a bit complex to describe, but in short consists of four categories: Self-awareness, self-management, social-awareness, and relationship management.

Self-awareness is the ability to recognize your own emotions, strengths, weaknesses, and motivations and its impact on others. Self-management is the ability to control or redirect negative or disruptive impulses and adapt to certain situations. Social-awareness is the ability to consider the feelings of others and understand context of certain situations. Relationship management is the ability to negotiate emotions in order to get along with others.

Developing yourself within each of the categories can help improve overall emotional intelligence and, especially with the improvement of self-management, can help with improving overall emotional wellness. There are many more practices that will help develop your emotional wellness such as support groups, mood diaries, and dedicating time to hobbies, all of which should be explored to tailor to individual preferences.

Emotional wellness in Jordan

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Jordan ranks fourth in the Middle East for the burden of mental health conditions. In response, Jordan was nominated to be the first country to implement the WHO’s mental health action program. Although great strides have been made since its implementation in 2008, mental health still needs much reform to hopefully include specific aspects such as emotional wellness. Despite the lack of government assistance, emotional wellness can still be improved on your own.

Jordan is full of opportunities to pursue hobbies or interests. Yoga studios, specific interest groups for hobbies, as well as support communities to discuss certain struggles can all be found in Jordan. These groups and activities can be found through word of mouth and online searches. 

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