Focusing on emotional wellness – The Clanton Advertiser

By Elisabeth Altamirano-Smith / Community Columnist

October is National Emotional Wellness Month. Emotional Wellness Month is an opportunity for any person to take control of their emotional wellbeing, seek advice, find calming activities that work for them, and find new ways to cope with it. There are numerous reasons a person might seek counseling, but once a person reaches a point where they feel overwhelmed, it is recommended that they seek counseling.

“The problems we face in life that become overwhelming differ between individuals,” said Christy Haigler-Hall, licensed social worker with The Wellness Group LLC of Clanton. “This can include grief, loss of a loved one, job, health, divorce, depression, anxiety, phase changes, childhood trauma, and many other reasons.”

According to the National Institute of Health, ways to improve emotional health include getting a good night’s sleep, reducing stress, strengthening social connections with others, finding ways to brighten your prospects, and coping with losses like joining a grief support group.

“Emotional health specifically targets a person’s ability to manage and express emotions that extend from what one learns and experiences in life,” said Haigler-Hall. “Emotional well-being also includes the ability to recognize the emotions of others and empathize with them.”

Often times, family or friends will notice a person’s emotional instability and don’t know how to effectively support them.

“Be aware of any changes the family member may have, such as a change in diet, social or spiritual,” said Haigler-Hall. “If you are worried about someone, go to them, express your concern, and offer to listen. In times of need, we often need someone to listen and not give advice. The power when someone is simply there is enormous! “

People who make use of mental health services are also often stereotyped.

“The idea that someone is weak, worried, or sick when they seek help is a common stereotype,” says Haigler-Hall. “It’s also very common for people to think ‘I should be able to handle this,’ so they tend not to seek help for fear of being judged.”

Haigler-Hall says people may not seek psychological help for religious reasons.

For more information, contact The Wellness Group LLC at 205-280-7733 or visit the National Institute of Health’s Emotional Wellness Toolkit online at www.nih.gov/health-information/emotional-wellness-toolkit.

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