What Does It Mean to Thrive Emotionally?
As I’ve embraced my new emotional diet, I’ve learned to recognize that I’ve spent much of my life suppressing a lot of my emotions. I’ve operated from a place of trying to conform to expectations—what society says, what religion says, what others want from me—instead of being true to myself into being a whole person, the person God created me to be.
Now that I have a much greater awareness of my thoughts and emotions, and I’m learning to feed my soul with a positive emotional diet, I’m experiencing a much higher level of happiness and balance. In many ways I’ve reached a new level of wholeness in which I’m thriving emotionally, and I can tell you that this is a true blessing.
What exactly does it mean to thrive emotionally? To me, thriving emotionally means many things. First and foremost, it means really knowing and understanding what’s going on inside of myself. It means understanding what my triggers are, and choosing my responses instead of simply reacting and then wondering why I reacted in that way. In order to thrive emotionally I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about what exactly I need in order to be well, and I actively work on bringing those things into my life.
In order to reach this point I’ve learned to engage in conversations with myself every day. Questions that I ask include: How am I doing today? Do I feel hurt? Do I feel rested? Do I feel cared for? Do I feel loved? What will make me happy? What do I need to function today? Based on my answers I am proactive about making changes to take care of my needs.
Some of the other tools that are helping me to thrive emotionally (some of which are explained in more detail in my article on My New Emotional Diet) include:
- Prayer. For me, this is always first and foremost.
- Practicing everyday self-awareness.
- Having a healthy emotional diet.
- Functioning from a powerful position by being aware of my thoughts, because thoughts lead to emotions.
Remember, if you are not self-aware you will be oblivious to your thoughts. Thoughts have power, these come from a beleif system which influence your behavior as well as your physical and emotional well-being. If you’re not self-aware you can find yourself in situations you’d rather not be in, and perhaps looking for outside sources to satisfy you. Self-awareness keeps confusion out and lets you know what your needs are.
A book that helped me draw a better understanding on this concept is called “Childhood Disrupted” by Donna Jackson Nakazawa. The book helps you further understand how our emotions are defined by a belief system that can have a major impact on your physical and emotional adult health. How our biography can become our biology. The author also provides additional tools to self help and get you back into who you really are.
Be aware, and do what you need to do to take care of your needs. Before you can bring your essence to the world you need to take care of YOU. You are special, you are loved, and you matter.
My identity is defined by my beliefs. My beliefs are deeply rooted into who God created me to be!