February 3rd, 2017 | Wellness
Feel Your Best: the Happiness Formula
We spend a lot of time and money on physical strength - the health club industry alone makes over $81 billion a year. There’s much less focus on mental strength, despite it being the driving factor in achieving physical goals. You can't reach your fullest potential without setting the stage for success. Here's what you can do to build a strong mind and emotional backbone.
Emotional wellness is the foundation of mental strength. It embodies your ability to cope with challenges and understand yourself. If emotional health is a fluctuating line, wellness is the peak. In psychology, you optimize this peak by striving towards self-actualization, which is the fulfillment of your full potential. Without a foundation of emotional wellness, there’s no way for you to reach the best that you’re capable of.
Perception is Key
What we achieve inwardly changes our outward reality.
Emotional wellness embodies self-esteem, which is essential to your happiness. Having a healthy level of self-esteem will help you find peace with yourself and with other people. You’ll be less likely to put yourself down or judge others too harshly.
When faced with stress, emotional health is especially important. It’s not things in themselves that trouble us, but our perceptions of them. Being happy is about using the compass inside us to bounce back from any challenge. Having a strong sense of self (be it self-esteem, self-acceptance or self-efficacy) will help you rise during tough times.
Strength In Your Self
Self-acceptance is knowing you can’t change the tide of the sea; self-efficacy is believing you can at least change the sail. Emotional wellness is the support beam that helps you adapt to those stormy days overall. It is hard to act when you’re unsure that your actions will make a difference. Having the optimism to see silver linings in dark days is a crucial part of mental health. We all face these storms in life. It’s how we react to them that defines us.
Besides having a healthy reaction to stress, emotional wellness also means seeing and accepting your feelings, thoughts, and behaviors rather than avoiding them. Emotional wellness reinforces self-efficacy, the ability to confront challenges rather than shied away.
No matter how stressful a situation is, understand that you are in control. If you know your strengths and weaknesses, you’ll have a clear picture of how you must proceed to overcome obstacles. Having an authentic world view is a powerful thing. Know yourself, and there’s nothing you can’t achieve.
Unlike physical health, there's no straightforward way to measure emotional health. Mental health checks are up to you to calculate, and you can't hop on a scale to weigh your happiness and self-esteem. However, here are some habits practiced by wellness gurus we can use as guidelines:
Be at peace with your feelings, thoughts, behavior, or beliefs.
Based on these factors, be able to make sound personal decisions.
Be unafraid to seek support when needed, but be capable of living independently.
Build meaningful relationships on a foundation of secure attachment, trust, and respect.
When it’s necessary, be able to confront conflict and take on challenges.
Take responsibility for your own actions.
Recognize your core values (what you find important and rewarding in life).
Manage your life without compromising these core values and personal beliefs.
Check yourself by taking this self-evaluation:
- Am I able to maintain a balance of work, family, friends, and other obligations?
Do I have healthy ways to cope with stress?
Am I able to make decisions soundly and quickly, without over thinking or worrying?
Am I able to set priorities?
If you answered no to any of these, it might be time for a mental recharge. Check our blog archive for some tips on work-life balance and overall wellness.
The Secret to Happiness
When it comes to being happy, there’s no such thing as a finished product. There’s no perfection in happiness, but there is a greater sense of acceptance and appreciation for what is imperfect.
To feel your best, you only need to accept who you are, then take the steps to spark joy in your life and believe it makes a difference. Be forgiving of yourself, and accept that perfection doesn’t exist. Only then will you be open to happiness, and your best self.
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Linda Cheng, Social Media and Content Manager
Linda graduated from the University of California, Irvine with three majors in Psychology, Urban Studies, and Social Ecology, as well as a minor in Global Sustainability. Her goal is to promote sustainable healthy living by providing the resources needed for success. Using smart data services and motivational psychology, she aims to move users towards long-term lifestyle changes for better health and fitness.