What is emotional wellness?
Emotional wellness has many names. It can be referred to as emotional well-being, emotional health, mental health, and more. However, the definitions are all the same - where emotional wellness is equal to someone having “psychological well-being, positive mental health, health-related quality of life, thriving, and subjective well-being” . So, in short, emotional wellness is when someone’s mental health is well, on top of physical and psychological health.
Why is it important to maintain emotional wellness?
Emotional wellness has proved to increase life expectancy, quality of life, and learning and positive well-being.
Growing up, we learn through experience just as much as we learn from teachers. What is important is to experience “positive, nurturing interactions to support future academic success and future healthy development” . Former Director of Penn State Better Kid Care Program, Dr. Claudia Mincemoyer, explains that we, as children, can learn emotional wellness through “promotion, prevention, and intervention” during school time.
Promotion is meant to promote good behaviors and environments for children in their early years of learning. An example of this can be to build loving relationships and environments that are supportive of children’s needs. Children need one on one attention, so it’s important to let them speak and feel like they are being heard and listened to. Prevention helps to prevent certain unrealistic expectations or to prevent lack of communication. Intervention is knowing when it is time to seek help, or communicate with other adults in order to come up with a solution to improve the child’s mental health.
As we grow older, emotional wellness is achieved through our own actions and decisions. Reducing stress and getting quality sleep are forms of self-care that can give you the energy to tackle the day. It can help to brighten your overall outlook on life, reducing negative thoughts and negativity. It is also shown that social connections can aid mental wellness. Having social connections can help us to link with others like us, strengthening our sense of belonging. Exercising, no matter how light or short, produces endorphins that can help combat depressive thoughts and loneliness.
Emotional wellness is very important, and unfortunately it is often neglected. It is about taking care of your mental well-being by managing stress, staying healthy, and thinking positively naturally. Many self-care tactics can be used to improve and maintain emotional wellness.
Author: Kayjah Taylor
Editor: Sophia Galvez
Health scientist: Samantha Nicholson
1. Feller, S. C., Castillo, E. G., Greenberg, J. M., Abascal, P., Van Horn, R., Wells, K. B., & University of California, Los Angeles Community Translational Science Team (2018). Emotional Well-Being and Public Health: Proposal for a Model National Initiative. Public health reports (Washington, D.C. : 1974), 133(2), 136–141. https://doi.org/10.1177/0033354918754540
2. Medvedev, O. N., & Landhuis, C. E. (2018). Exploring constructs of well-being, happiness, and quality of life. PeerJ, 6, e4903. https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.4903
3. Mincemoyer, C. (2016). Emotional wellness: Understanding its importance (better kid care). Better Kid Care (Penn State Extension). Retrieved November 5, 2021, from https://extension.psu.edu/programs/betterkidcare/early-care/tip-pages/all/emotional-wellness-understanding-its-importance