Three good habits that can lead to optimum emotional wellness?
A clear strategy on stress management. Sometimes the same healthy habit can be covering multiple bases, but it is important that you are aware of how it is serving you. How you frame a habit is often how it supports you. For me running supports my emotional, mental and physical wellness. It is an outlet to move the cortisol through my system in the morning. Processing this stress and moving it through my body means the aggression or stress is expressed in a healthy way and I don’t let it build up or be stored in my body. Allowing stress to build up and not moving it through the body results in low level inflammation, and this is the root cause of all our leading chronic diseases. It also allows me to think and usually produces new creative ideas because our brains work better when we are moving. Whatever it is you do to process stress, it could be meditation, exercise, journalling, talking to a friend, you need to be clear with yourself that is how it serves you. Be active in moving the negative energy or tension through you and not letting it build up.
Gut health is essential to our emotional wellness. Our gut produces the majority of our serotonin and directly impacts our mood and sense of security. When our gut lining is weak from eating too many processed or acidic foods we start to feel weak emotionally as well. Therefore one of the most important things we need to consider is boosting our gut health through a healthy diet that includes pre and probiotics. Prebiotics are the food that are health bacteria prefer to feed on, and probiotics are foods that directly contain healthy bacteria in them. Some examples of prebiotics I love are: garlic, onions, leeks, asparagus, bananas, oats, apples, cacao, flaxseeds, jicama roots, and seaweed such as the nori paper we use for sushi rolls. Examples of probiotics are: kefir, I prefer coconut, Sauerkraut, I love to make my own, miso, Kombucha and pickles. The more homegrown the fermented foods are, the more alive the bacteria are and therefore more powerful at transforming your gut health.
Relationships and feeling connected to our community. We are social beings and we need to feel a part of the tribe. We need to feel seen, heard and respected in order to feel supported in terms of our emotional wellness. Obviously the way in which we have been maintaining our social ties has dramatically shifted with the pandemic, but I also think it has highlighted for most of us just how important those family visits, nights out with friends, and catching up over coffee in person are to us, and to our overall emotional wellness. I recommend trying to make new connections online, it is easier than ever before thanks to technology, but also because we are all in the same boat in this regard and really open to connecting on a deeper level with people we have met online in courses, or Facebook groups. I mean I think that the ClubHouse app was created in part to fill this void we are feeling to chat with other humans on a daily basis about things other than home or work.
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