5 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Emotional Health


October is Emotional Well-being Month and although many different things determine if we are emotionally healthy, there are certain cues that we all recognize. We may notice a shift in eating habits, poor sleep, less self-care, diminished sex drive, and diminished energy levels.

Want to know if you’re emotionally healthy? Ask yourself these questions often.

1. Are you experiencing the full spectrum of feelings? 

It is healthy and natural to have many feelings. Emotions work together—the greater the sadness we can handle, the greater the joy we can experience. Feeling sad and angry all the time is not good and is a sign of depression. While being happy all the time can be a sign that you are blocking all other emotions out of fear of being judged or consumed by what you’re repressing.

Our psychological well-being is present when we can feel the complete spectrum of our emotions with acceptance, and no matter what they are, they do not throw us off balance.

2. Is your schedule balanced? 

Do you accumulate an endless to-do list, and tell your friends you have a bear of a schedule? Productivity is one thing that often shows psychological strength — it requires a focused mind. But being constantly busy may signal that you are hiding from yourself. You may have emotions you are uncomfortable with or old traumas that you need to attend to that are causing you to be constantly busy.

3. Is your alone time balanced?

Taking time for yourself is the best way to know and become comfortable with yourself, which is something we need to be mentally well-balanced. But it can be an indication that you are attempting to avoid confronting your feelings or thoughts if you always remain away from others.

If you’re spending time alone and it doesn’t feel good, ask yourself if you’re hiding from others or suffering from a sense of shame that you need support with. Or are you suffering from low self-esteem?

According to your natural personality, we all have different requirements for time alone versus time with others. If you notice changes in social behavior, this is often a sign that you’re psychologically troubled. If you’re usually the life of the party but have not been going out much lately, or if you’re usually an introvert but are now out every night networking with strangers, you may be suffering from an imbalance in intimacy, bipolar disorder, anxiety, or an avoidant personality.

When it comes to being alone, please don’t confuse it with being lonely. Loneliness is about feeling disconnected, not about being alone.

4. Is your stress in check?

Indeed, life is frequently challenging. A little stress can even help us improve our performance.

But how do you deal with pressure? A tantrum or crying if things get too demanding is reasonable and helpful. If you don’t release pressure, you will eventually explode over a minor issue. The idea that ongoing stress is fine is outdated. It may cause real psychological and physical damage, not to mention the anguish and damage it causes to your family life and relationships.

Is your resilience a result of learning from your mistakes or laughing at them? Are you still feeling bad about what happened years ago or unable to unwind even though you have recently left your stressful job? If your recent stress has snowballed on old, hidden issues, you may want to address them.

5. Is that a secret in your back pocket?

Your real psychological trauma and the shame you feel may always be hidden in your back pocket. Shopaholism, social media addiction, exercise addiction, and romance addiction are all examples of addiction covered up by drug and alcohol abuse. Whenever you need to keep something secret, there’s a good chance that it is an addiction – we keep things to ourselves as though we are abusing ourselves.

No one needs to know everything we think, but it’s a good idea to ask yourself why. If you feel compelled to keep certain things a secret, make a list and ask yourself whether you feel shameful about them. If so you need to act. 

Whatever you do, seek help and support. 

Most of us experience emotional difficulties at some point. The key question is, how long will you struggle or resort to compensating behaviors? You don’t have to wait until you are at rock bottom to seek support. A counselor or psychotherapist can create a safe space for you to recognize your issues and find new ways to live that are positive and forward-moving.

Don’t beat yourself up or compare yourself to others. Seek help and support.