What is emotional wellbeing? 

Just like we have physical health, we have emotional and mental health, but we tend not to notice it unless we become unwell. Find out why emotional wellbeing is just as important as physical wellbeing and what can affect it. 

When you think of mental health, you may automatically think of mental illness, but this is only one aspect of an important part of our holistic wellbeing. Sometimes our physical wellbeing is good, and we don’t really think about it. But other days – maybe you slept funny and your neck is sore, or you have heartburn – your physical wellbeing isn’t top notch. It’s really no different for our emotional wellbeing. 

We all go through tough times. Bereavement, breakups, redundancy or smaller things like missing the bus and being late for work can happen to us all. These things could trigger the symptoms of a mental illness, but even if we don’t meet the criteria for a diagnosis, it doesn’t mean that we’re emotionally well. Losing motivation, feeling pessimistic or just generally down can all be the signs that your emotional wellbeing has taken a dip.  

Similarly, if you have a mental illness, it doesn’t mean you can’t have good emotional wellbeing. Many people with lifelong conditions, like schizophrenia or clinical depression, who have appropriate and effective treatment are generally happy, optimistic people.  

We all sit somewhere on an axis of mental health and emotional or mental wellbeing, moving around it during our lifetime. At points our mental health may be minimal but our emotional welbeing is optimal, or we may find ourselves with top notch mental health but low emotional wellbeing.  

So, take note of your emotional wellbeing, just as you would your physical wellbeing and start making time to look after it through self care. Mental illness recovery is much more effective when we seek professional support early, by becoming aware of your emotional wellbeing you’ll be more attuned to when it’s time to seek help.