In honor of mental health month, we will focus on the importance of emotional growth and courage.
Emotional courage is the ability to feel fear and sadness but do what you can despite those feelings.
It takes a lot of strength and vulnerability to confront your emotions, but it is worth it. It can improve your personal interactions, relationships, professional growth, and overall happiness.
When we allow ourselves to be emotionally courageous, we open up the door to emotional growth. We become more self-aware and start to understand our triggers and how to deal with them. We also learn to set boundaries and say no when we need to.
That’s why shining a light on topics like mental health care and how to deal with feelings like loneliness are fundamental.
Becoming emotionally brave
Is emotional growth the key to a fulfilling life?
Emotional courage plays an integral part in how our life evolves because it allows us to face our fears and overcome them and grow from there.
Emotions give us power as they hold their own power; they can shape everything we do. They make us more creative, successful, and happy, as well as they can make us more angry, anxious, and stressed.
The way we deal with them influences everything that matters: our actions, how we do our job, how far we are going in our career, and relationships, either friends, family, or even strangers! It can even severely affect our health and daily routine.
Emotional intelligence is all about understanding emotions on their own (or trying to), healthily managing them, and using them to our advantage.
Can it be learned?
Emotional intelligence can be learned every day, and it is a valuable skill to develop because it is an essential ingredient for a happy and successful life.
How do we build emotional courage? These are the three foundations for it:
Yes or no – the central dilemma. It has probably been winning the race for most of our lifetime. But recently,no has made a strong comeback. The forces of no tell you not to give in to your impulsive side but to look elsewhere in your brain for guidance.
There are good reasons for this, mostly having to do with the fact that the world has recently changed very fast, very drastically.
“We lived in a world where we didn’t need an inner no because no was all around us. We live in a world designed to give us what we think we want, and now yes is all around us.
It is like the reverse Yes Man movie with Jim Carrey, where he has to say yes to everything, and his life gets better. We have to train ourselves to say no to help ourselves and improve our lives.
We generally concern ourselves with others’ feelings rather than our own. Even worrying about what other people might feel about you if you turn them down. But putting yourself first is not a sinful act but an act of honor to yourself.
Breaking patterns of behavior seem tedious and nearly impossible for many. Yet, recognizing unhealthy behavior patterns is exponentially crucial for your mental health care and the possibility to grow!
You want to break patterns!
The science of habits and patterns is a bit frightening for those trying to break unhealthy ones, but there are ways you can end these destructive behaviors and cultivate a higher quality of life.
There are three necessary steps to breaking a pattern:
It means becoming aware of our behavior and consciously understanding whether our behavioral patterns are healthy and if we want to make an effort to change them if not.
Ask yourself: “Am I moving forward?- Is this ‘action’ or ‘thought’ helping me in any way?” If not, that’s the indication you need to try a new approach; time to make a change.
Acceptance is similar to acknowledgment, but it’s this step that we agree (to ourselves mainly) about this behavior and its nature. This step is definitely more brutal than others because it takes admitting that what we do is causing us stress and damage.
This is where we begin taking active steps to end these bad habits and unhealthy behavioral patterns.
*This step has little steps. Is the cliche not so cliche of one day at a time. Here is to put your dedication to yourself and your life to the test. You need to commit to breaking these patterns you’ve to accept having and choose a better way.
How is your mental health?
Destructive patterns can severely affect our emotional state and mental health. If we are stuck in a cycle of unhealthy behaviors, it becomes increasingly difficult to break free and improve ourselves.
Which patterns can we identify as damaging?
The recurrent always or never in our vocabulary might be a sign of catastrophizing or over-generalizing your life. It happens with a single action, event, a phase, or information, and you see it as if it was the big picture, more than it is, almost obsessive.
This is an easy pattern to notice because it usually involves others helping you denote this behavior, or you can realize the time spent on this particularity.
Where you can’t spot thinking about something repetitively as if it was played on a loop in your mind like a movie, but you don’t get new input or take any action.
Typically, pondering leads to problems growing and developing strong effects on our physical and mental health and can be more challenging to deal with in the long run.
All or nothing thinking
A behavior pattern that is common but also very negative is the all-or-nothing thinking. The black or white mentality where there is no balance, and you perceive things as being either very good or all bad; there are rarely grey areas.
It is a very drastic pattern that is easy to recognize as it can generate unnecessary stress, depression, or anxiety.
Seeking and accepting help
Saying no is healthy and vital to this process, but it’s also a sign of emotional growth and an essential step to accepting help when it is needed.
In this case, we say yes.
Help it’s usually linked to weakness or need. Still, mental health influences our every move; we should be able to accept that we can’t do everything by ourselves and that help it’s more of a synonym for strength. It’s-being capable of seeing beyond our immediate self and wanting to become better in the long run.
It’s an ambitious mentality, and a mature realization of growth also means support and teamwork.
Usually, this can come from your loved ones- friends and family, people who are often near you and can see if there is an evident change or negative effect on your mood and character.
Emotional courage means being able to differ from those who care for you and those who are used to you saying yes to everything.
Be guarded of your time and energy, but accept help when you feel like your plate is too full and others are willing to lend a fork.
Seek the help, break the taboo
We don’t often discuss mental illness in society, but we must do. We cannot hide from it anymore.
Many people are embarrassed about their backgrounds and present lives and are concerned with being stigmatized, especially in the workplace.
“At the end of the first session, we booked another appointment, and I was convinced: everything started to make sense in my mind already, and my thoughts were restless. I was ready to start working on the subjects that mattered.”-
Support from those who know you and love you. No matter the extent, the complexity of your feelings.
Help from a professional committed to helping you build your process, grow, and become better.
Check-in with your emotions
If you feel overwhelmed, down, or don’t know what you are feeling, seek support from a professional or loved one. Asking for help and owning your problems as much as your victories show power, not weakness.
Be the powerful persona you know you can!
Emotional courage is the key to mental strength, and mental strength is the key to all the great doors in life!
At DNAMIC, we not only understand its importance but encourage our community to keep it in a healthy check, enabling them mental care, workshops, and a safe space to be honest and grow from it.
If you want to know more about it, you can also check our blog, where we show our DNAMIC culture and values that represent us!