Emotional Wellness Month

Emotional wellness and emotional intelligence are things we should be discussing more often, not simply for one month out of the year.  This is a subject I personally feel very strongly about and thought I would share my experience and journey. 

Currently digging my toes in the sand, I get to sit at the beach as I write this because, well, the beach is my happy place, my creative place.  Had I read that statement 1 year ago, I would have angrily moved my little mouse and hovered over the top right corner of my screen and hit that big, fat X and said, “this person is full of crap”.  The sole purpose of this paragraph is to tell you to keep going and believe in yourself.  Sometimes we must go through the darkest, toughest times to realize what is most important to us and who we really are under all the unresolved trauma, negative emotion, and anger. 

Emotional wellness is defined as “an awareness, understanding, and acceptance of your emotions, and your ability to manage effectively through challenges and change”.  This doesn’t mean you’re chipper and perky 24/7, but rather learning to become aware of your emotions, what is triggering them, why, and how to properly handle them.  When we are easily triggered by emotion, we become vulnerable, therefore creating a vicious circle.  The world and people around us will not change, and we cannot control what happens around us.  We can however, learn to control how we respond vs react to situations we are presented with in our daily lives in order to achieve our desired outcome.  This little gem applies to every aspect of life. 

Living in the moment and expressing gratitude always sounded so cliché to me.  But the truth is, practicing gratitude daily has been life changing.  Not only does it completely shift your perspective on life, but it keeps you focused on the things that truly matter.    As for living in the moment, this doesn’t refer to avoid making plans or preparing for the future, rather, if we are solely focused on the future, we are creating additional anxiety for ourselves due to the uncertainty the future holds.  When we focus on the past, this can bring about feelings of anger and resentment.  None of these contribute to your emotional wellness.     

I’m here to tell you that you – and only you – have the power to focus and shift your emotional health.  No one will do it for you, and you must be willing to put in the work.  I promise you, it will be the most rewarding work you’ve ever done.  Enter Angie Sanchez, who literally walked into my life when I needed her the most.  Knowing I was in a very bad place emotionally and physically, I made a decision to take hold of what I felt was my life spiraling out of control.  I could sit here and write for hours on all the events in the span of 2+ years that led to multiple breakdowns, declining health, and anger, but I’ll spare the details.  What I want you to know is that you are more than capable of turning things around, even though it may seem impossible at the time. 

Sometimes we need to start small.  Try taking 10 minutes to yourself every morning.  Read, stretch, practice gratitude.  This will set the tone for your day.  We easily spend more time than that scrolling through our phones, which often leaves us feeling angrier and emptier.  I could sit here and tell you to get a massage or light a candle and take a relaxing bath.  While all those things feel amazing, the real work starts inside each one of us.  We must focus on the internal work, managing emotions, practicing empathy and gratitude.  Make these your priority day in and day out and watch the way you view your daily life change. 

Suzanne Lister

co-founder & owner