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Emotional Hygiene

It's common knowledge that good hygiene is important for physical health, these include, hand washing, food preparation, a neat living space, a regular sleep routine, and I can hear my lovely sister interject, "remember to floss!" (She is a dental hygienist)

Overall, it is indisputable - medical hygiene has increased our longevity and life quality.

Now, there is a psychologist, Dr. Guy Winch, who suggests that there is a type of 'emotional first aid' people can practice, at times, to enhance one's overall health and wellness. In reviewing his work, I think there is an important and interesting point he raises.

Life situations that may seem typical, or normal, with our intellect, can, at times, cause us to feel confused, disconnected from others and possibly ourselves. For example thinking that friends or family are too busy to really care about you, because they have not texted, emailed, or liked your fb post. It is a case of thinking that, "It doesn't really matter. It's not that important." However, the feelings fester.

Recommend that you watch Guy Winch’s TED talk on "Emotional First Aid" - it is brilliant! He enthusiastically, and in a warm manner, reports, on how greater understanding of one's emotional experiences can enhance one's ability to cope and foster resilience.

Also, therapy with a clinical or counseling psychologist can help improve one's "Emotional Hygiene". A therapist works toward creating a safe space so that their clients can better understand the connections with their thoughts, feelings, wishes, and behaviors. This therapeutic process is unique in that one works towards integrating the different parts of the self which creates insight. It is an experience of "Wow! I didn't know that I felt this way!" It is more than an intellectual rationalization. So, insight is an experience of knowing the self, which improves one's emotional health, social relationships and overall functioning. Be well.

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