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Ten signs of emotional wellbeing

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There is a world of difference between being in recovery from such as an addiction and also being emotionally well. This is because it’s not just about stopping the drinking or drug-taking.

For instance there are people who have stopped their addictive drinking on their own, sometimes for years. But a great number of these people are what is known as “white-knuckling it”.

This means that while they might not be drinking their life is an emotional rollercoaster. They are almost continually gripping on so tightly that their knuckles have turned white.

It happens because they have not dealt with any issues from their past, their thinking patterns and responses to living life on life’s terms – with all its ups and downs. They might well be a “dry drunk”.

That is someone who behaves like an alcoholic but without the drink to use as their medication. So they will frequently be restless, irritable and discontent.

They may hide the emotional disorder that’s spinning like a tornado inside them with a mask of superiority and arrogance. These are signs of being emotionally unwell.

It can happen to anyone who thinks they have dealt with a mental health issue and that’s the end of it. Most often though it will be someone who has tried to deal with their mental health problems alone on their own terms.

An emotional breakdown

Those emotions that are bottled up but spinning around have to come out somehow at some time… Then everyone around them will suffer as well.

Frequently it is only an emotional breakdown that will cause someone suffering in this way to take positive action. It can be said that their breaking down is their waking up.

An emotional breakdown is when someone feels mentally and emotionally overwhelmed. It leaves them in a terrifying place when regular life seems impossible.

Even the simplest things such as going to a shop, a social event or paying a bill can seem too much. They often feel forced into isolating – but this only makes things worse.

Also known as a nervous or mental breakdown or hitting rock bottom, it can last for any time from days to years. There can be many factors leading to an emotional breakdown.

This could be that someone has never known how to usefully respond to certain things in life. Other problems that are commonly cited include economic insecurity, break-ups, bereavement, constant stress, having an illness or injury, or suffering a trauma.

Presently another reason is the COVID-19 situation. It is making life vastly different from the norm.

Symptoms can vary in individuals but many with an emotional disorder will have:

  • Panic attacks.
  • Depression.
  • Anxiety. 
  • Dizziness.
  • Shaking.
  • Stomach upsets.
  • Insomnia.
  • Frequent nightmares.
  • Stress.
  • Isolation.
  • Paranoia.
  • Trauma flashbacks.
  • Muscle tension.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Apathy.
  • A lack of concern for appearance and/or personal hygiene.
  • Eating unhealthily including binge eating.
  • Emotional outbursts.
  • Sweating more than usual.
  • Trembling.
  • Breathing difficulties & possible chest tightness or pain.
  • Loss of a sense of self.


What are the signs of emotional wellbeing?

You can often tell if someone is emotionally well straightaway. They have an assuredness about them yet look relaxed and in the present moment rather than being distracted with other thoughts.

Some good signs that indicate emotional wellbeing are:

1. Being able to switch off and relax

If someone is emotionally healthy they will know there’s a time to relax and stop thinking about such as work. It’s beneficial all round as it will recharge physical, mental and emotional energy levels.

2. Living in the moment

Being in the now means not regretting the past or being worried about the future. It allows more enjoyment and better focus.

3. Sleeping soundly

This is connected to being able to relax – by packing away any tasks or worries. The best sleepers are people who don’t even think about falling asleep: they just do it. Obviously a good sleep is beneficial to the next day whether that day involves work, study, parenting or play. Or all of those.

4. Letting resentments go…

This means that if someone has done something that leads to a resentment, an emotionally well person is able to let it go and not let it dominate them. They won’t let that person, place or thing live “rent free” in their head. Someone who’s exceptionally emotionally well will hardly even get any resentments.

5. Meaning in life

Having a sense of meaning is a certain sign of emotional wellness. Jewish psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, who survived a Nazi concentration camp, wrote in his bestselling book Man’s Search For Meaning that it is having a meaning that gives us happiness.

6. Being hopeful and optimistic

Anyone who’s emotionally healthy will be focusing on positives and abundance – not on negatives and what is lacking. They will be full of hope and this will always motivate them.

7. Comfortable with who they are

This means someone knows their strengths and their weaknesses. They are content with how they are and do not seek approval from others. They will be humble and open-minded to new ideas or ways of doing something. However, they will also be confident enough to say no if something crosses their healthy boundaries.

8. Feeling connected

Feeling disconnected is seen as one of the key aspects of addiction – and one of the solutions to becoming addiction-free is to gain and maintain a sense of connection to others. An emotionally well person will understand the phrase: “everyone is one.” They will feel connected and always put their attention on the similarities not the differences.

9. Having empathy

Someone who has strong emotional health will be genuinely interested in other people. They will be looking to see how they can help others. Even if they disagree with someone they are capable of seeing life from that person’s point of view.

10. Taking pride in appearance and personal hygiene

Anyone who has self-love will take care of themselves. So as well as dressing accordingly and naturally keeping themselves clean they will choose to eat healthily and do regular exercise too. Because they value themselves they will value their time – and see what they can give to the world each day.

Having emotional wellbeing leads to more emotional wellbeing. But on the other hand, if someone is emotionally unhealthy it is often progressive the other way.

An emotional breakdown can frequently be an indication of a major mental health issue. For this reason it should never be ignored.

Our experienced team has years of expertise at looking into all mental health problems. We have proven treatments that can help anyone in need of emotional rehabilitation.

We’re also in the ideal natural setting to aid wellbeing and relaxation. Our luxury mansion by our beautiful tranquil lake is created with absolute comfort in mind.

Contact us today to discover how Tikvah Lake Recovery can help you or someone you care about.

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David Hurst

David Hurst

David Hurst has four books published on mental health recovery, including 12 Steps To 1 Hero, The Anxiety Conversation and Words To Change Your Life. He has written for national newspapers and magazines around the world for 30 years including The Guardian, GQ, Esquire, Marie Claire and The Times. He has been in successful continual recovery since January 2002.

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