Is mental health more than dealing with a diagnosis or disorder?
It’s about the ongoing wellness of your mind.
One important factor to having a healthy mind is learning how to use our thoughts to our own benefit. This begins with awareness of our thoughts.
Our thoughts create our feelings.
The ability to feel and process our emotions – especially negative emotions – is a huge part of a life well lived. Life coaching teaches not only how to “survive” negative emotions (such as anger, disappointment, or grief) but to thrive in our ability to feel and grow.
To allow the emotion is the key.
We must learn how to process the emotion all the way through and have space to feel it. Emotions are temporary when we allow them. Often, we get tangled up in avoiding or resisting our emotions. This often results in more negativity.
For example, if a person is experiencing loneliness because they are thinking “I don’t have a special person in my life.” and they reach for a drink to numb out or avoid the feeling, the result is often added guilt or shame on top of the loneliness.
Understanding our mind comes from developing the skill of self-awareness. You can begin by noticing your feelings.
Pause and pay attention to where you experience it in your body. Put a name to the emotional vibration. Is it worry? Is it sadness? Is it excitement? Next, identify the thought or thoughts that are causing this feeling. I often encourage clients to write down these thoughts as it will get them out of their head and in front of their eyes.
As an alternative, you can start with writing down your thoughts and exploring the feeling that comes from the thought. Developing a daily practice of downloading your thoughts helps you to grow in awareness of habitual thinking. You can also see the thoughts that serve you well and the thoughts that don’t serve to move you towards your goals.
Becoming more intentional about focusing our attention to the thoughts that serve us leads to progress, and ultimately, a better quality of life.
Self-awareness is the first step.