Today’s society and technology inform us on a regular basis how important it is to eat a clean diet, exercise and manage our stress.
Many today are using breathing techniques, meditation and yoga to help manage their stress, but is simply managing your stress the right course of action or is it simply a band-aid for something deeper?
In our fast-paced world, we are constantly being bombarded with so much information and distractions, never having much of a chance to slow down and stop* to really think about what’s going on underneath the surface.
This is why when difficulties show up in our careers, our relationships and our physical health, we often dismiss them and just push ourselves to keep moving forward, so we don’t fall behind.
We’re A Society Of Non-Feelers
Depending on your upbringing, you might have been raised to think that slowing down or showing your emotions was a sign of “weakness” which has led you not to be able to express the very thing which is said to separate us from animals.
To avoid feeling the emotional discomfort, many of us turn to things like drugs or alcohol never realizing, however, that turning to things such as tv series, food, sex and social media is another way of not dealing with what we’re feeling.
Emotions Can Sometimes Be VERY Uncomfortable
No one has a problem with allowing themselves to feel the emotions of happiness, appreciation, and love.
However, when we begin experiencing sadness, disappointment, grief, shame or guilt, these emotions are often too difficult to bear so we prevent ourselves from feeling them by suppressing them in the many “normal and non-harmful” ways we can which further adds to the denial.
The Snowball Effect
Consciously not dealing with the issues in our lives and the emotions connected to them doesn’t make them just disappear. Subconsciously, we’re still thinking about the day in and day out, even when we’re asleep.
It’s this constant subconscious hamster wheel we’ve put ourselves in that over time begins elevating our levels of stress, known as “the silent killer.” Thanks to researchers, we now know that chronic low levels of stress can lead to many forms of diseases.
What People Don’t Realize?
Most people don’t realize that many of our seemingly trivial habits put us under constant emotional stress. We don’t necessarily need to experience the ending of a relationship, loss of a loved one or rough day at work to have stress in our lives.
Simple things such as saying “yes” when you really mean “no,” not speaking up about something that bothers you to avoid confrontation or failing to meet your own expectations puts you under stress.
It’s these little things that we do on a daily basis that has become so second nature to us and have formed part of our perceived identity that we don’t realize what’s really going on within ourselves.
We tell ourselves that we’ve always had bad tempers, that we’re loners so we keep our problems to ourselves or that we really enjoy a couple of glasses of wine at the end of the day to wind down. There’s nothing wrong with a glass or two of wine, right?
The incessant repetition of these habits multiple times a day year after year eventually paves the path to ill health and well-being. To add more fuel to the fire, our society and the media teaches us that it’s “normal” behavior to seek comfort outside of ourselves even if it’s just temporary.
We seek out things like the latest phone, fill ourselves up with comfort food or get major surgery to “fix” how we look on the outside.
The True Reason We’re Emotionally Unstable
The true reason most of us struggle with having good emotional health is because we’re still hurting deep down inside. No matter what your background or upbringing may have been, we’ve all had difficult experiences as children.
Experiences that caused deep emotional wounds and we’ve lived our lives oblivious to the fact that we’re carrying with this childhood pain until today.
These emotional wounds that go quite often unseen to the naked eye are a huge part of the reason why we have trouble maintaining pristine health as adults as well as balance and harmony in other areas of our lives. Just as your torso is connected to your arms, legs, and head, there is also such interconnectedness between your emotions and your whole life.
If you feel emotionally stressed over finances, this might certainly affect your work performance due to lack of concentration because of worry, cause arguments between you and your partner or create sadness within yourself because you might not be able to spend money on the things that bring you joy.
The Importance Of Emotional Health And Emotional Intelligence Isn’t Usually Taught
Quite often as we grow, we are taught by our families and society to assume certain characteristics that are in alignment with our genders. The old saying “boys don’t cry” or “boys who cry are sissies” often causes men to greatly disconnect from their emotions.
This can weigh a huge negative toll on their intimate relationships in adulthood since there is no room for openness and vulnerability which allows for a deeper and more fulfilling connection.
And even though it’s generally more acceptable for women to be vulnerable and emotional, because of the Women’s Rights Movement which eventually allowed women to enter the same workforce as men, many women have unconsciously disconnected themselves from their emotions because of the type of environment they work in.
There is usually no room for emotions in industries where the majority of the workforce is predominantly male.
Giving more importance to your emotional health and developing more emotional intelligence to help you maintain it is absolutely vital for your overall well-being in life.
The longer we suppress* how we truly feel, the longer we keep ourselves trapped in a vicious cycle that is going on in our subconscious and eventually gets reflected back to us in our lives.
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