Friday, April 3, 2009

Physical Health and Emotional Health are Connected

One of the most important areas of our lives is our health. When we don't practice self care in our daily lives we can decrease our immune response and increase our chance of illness. It is vital that we practice healthy living principles to have the physical energy to support ourselves emotionally.

When we are hungry, angry, lonely, tired or stressed (HALTS) we may not have the energy we need to respond appropriately to our surroundings. When we feel ourselves reacting instead of responding to our environment, we check to see if we are dissipating our energy with the acronym HALTS. If we are facing any of these areas we can take a time out from our situation and practice self care. We can avoid reacting inappropriately if we do this brief self assessment (HALTS) when we first feel ourselves slipping.

When we are hungry we may become more irritable or hostile. Our blood sugar is falling and this may create a feeling within us that drives our mood. When we take a moment to care for our bodies and allow ourselves to rebalance our blood sugar, a balanced mood follows.

If we are upset about an unresolved issue, we may let those feelings overflow onto our current situation without realizing it. We can give ourselves a time out and practice some self care... meditation, guided imagery, taking a walk or calling a friend in order to cool off and gain perspective and insight into our emotional self.

If we are feeling lonely we ask ourselves if we are lonely or just alone. Alone time is essential for healthy growth, giving us time to reflect and be at peace with our inner self. If we are lonely, we can reach out to others via telephone, attend a meeting, use the Internet or just go out to a local shop.

When exhaustion takes it's toll we must acquiesce and sleep. Adequate daily rest is paramount to our health. We need to rejuvenate our bodies each night via proper rest. The most successful sleep patterns are those that follow a similar pattern of rest times each day. This works with the bodies natural rhythm enhancing overall health.

In times of stress we must make extra efforts at self care. There may be intervals when we endure extended periods of stress in our lives over which we may have virtually no control. During those times we practice self care, use our tools and if needed seek counseling to help us through the difficulties. Life can be problematic, but there is no need to face life's challenges alone. There is assistance and comfort at every level of society from the most experienced counselor to the local support meeting in a church basement. Reaching out for help when we feel overwhelmed is a healthy response to stress.

Taking care of our health and making sure we practice self care in our daily lives allows us to have the physical energy available to deal with the emotional issues that present themselves to us each day. Through this process of self care and using our tools we give ourselves the gift of emotional health.

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