Health and HappinessHealth and happiness — two states of existence that everyone desires, yet many struggle to sustain both. Not to mention, long-term unhappiness can be detrimental to one’s health. Illnesses resulting from stress, depression or anxiety often manifest from long-term issues where, instead of changing the environment, one chooses to ignore it.

How do you know if you are in jeopardy? Consider the EMS of health and happiness: Emotional, Mental, and Spiritual satisfaction.

Emotional

People with good emotional health feel satisfied and content with themselves, they have healthy relationships with family, friends, and colleagues. They keep problems in perspective of the bigger picture. In other words, good emotional health means understanding and balancing healthy relationships, situations, and responses. People with good emotional health smile a lot, sing in the shower, and demonstrate optimism and good cheer.

To evaluate how you stack up, ask yourself:

1) Do I wake up feeling tired, anxious, and dreading the day?
2) Do I tolerate relationships and situations that I don’t enjoy or feel good about instead of addressing the issues?
3) Do I envy others who seem happy-go-lucky?

Mental

Mental health is similar to emotional health in that it includes how one expresses emotions, but it goes further to include how one handles daily life challenges. Think work/life balance, how efficiently you work in teams, or how flexibly you deal with change. Mental health is about recognizing one’s abilities while being productive in work and play.

To evaluate how you stack up, ask yourself:

1) Do I feel angry when things happen outside of my control?
2) Do I feel like someone else always takes credit for work I have done when forced to work in a team?
3) Do I resent people or circumstances that force me to change my routine?

Spiritual

Finally, spiritual health is unique depending on one’s respective beliefs. Your “spirit” usually refers to that which connects you to something bigger than yourself — God, goddess, great divine, Buddha, all that is, the Universe. If you are agnostic or atheist, it could represent your relationship with the natural world around you. Essentially, spiritual health represents the deepest part of you, that part that lets you make meaning of who you are, why you are here, and what your purpose for living is. For some, manifesting spirituality may be equated to deepening their religious beliefs. For others, it could mean letting go of what they once held to be true to embrace a different ideology that better resonates with who they are.

To evaluate how you stack up, ask yourself:

1) Does my life feel empty or void of deeper meaning?
2) Do I begrudge people whose beliefs differ from my own?
3) Do I ignore an internal nagging to spend more time in nature?

Results

If you answered yes to any one of these questions, that’s an indication that you could benefit from increasing your health and happiness by taking a closer look at your emotional, mental, or spiritual health. If you answered yes to three or more of these questions, you could potentially transform your life by getting to the root of the issue.

Steps to Creating Better Health & Happiness

Be honest with yourself as you reflect on these questions and the issues you are dealing with. Whenever you hold on to feelings such as anger, sadness, disappointment, or resentment, you are in a state of dis-ease. Long-term dis-ease, without intervention, can lead to a serious medical condition or disease such as chronic pain, high blood pressure, diabetes, joint pain, or even terminal illness.

Cell biologist and medical school professor Dr. Bruce Lipton is a crusader, putting into words what has taken him years of experience, study, and assimilation to understand himself. In his book, The Biology of BeliefLipton explains the mind/body connection: “The mind’s energy (or thoughts) directly influence how the physical brain controls the body’s physiology.”

In other words, if beliefs are just thoughts that we’ve had over and over, then our beliefs control our biology (whether or not these beliefs are true). Our thoughts produce the chemicals that influence the environment, therefore, our thoughts influence our health and happiness.

Lipton asserts that the mind can create healing just as easily as it can create disease, which is why emotional and mental health are critical. If you’re health and happiness level is not where it should be, look for support. Contact your medical provider for a check up or an appropriate referral to a specialist. Talk to someone in your community. Find an outside activity that you can participate in on a regular basis, even if it’s just walking. Connecting with nature is a great way to connect more deeply with yourself. Read books that inspire you.

How you feel is up to you. If you don’t like how you feel, take the necessary steps to create change!

Sheila Callaham is a best-selling author, motivational speaker, and success coach. If you’d like to receive more content like this, including free and low-cost resources for making your life rock, click here to subscribe to her newsletter!

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