We can all be happier versions of ourselves by increasing our well-being. It's not uncommon for us to visit a public venue, such as a bar or a shopping mall, and to feel envious of people who "seem" to have it all. What we might not realize is that they're putting on a cheerful face, and their reality is radically different. Overall, we could be more content than they are, but we've caught them on a day when they figured out how to live in the moment. There's a great value inherent in living in the present, but this is also a good time to make choices that impact our future health and wellbeing.
What the Research Says
Some people don't seem to have many worries, and their general confidence level is high. One reason that some people are more successful in their personal and work lives is that they have higher emotional intelligence (EI), or "an ability to assure feelings and pleasures by one and others." They can regulate their own emotions, which means they are less affected by negativity in the outside world. This ability sets them up to make better psychological adjustments throughout their lives and to handle different situations with confidence. They will have higher self-esteem in general. The opposite is also true: people with lower emotional intelligence tend to have lower self-esteem. They are more likely to develop psychopathology, such as depression. If we can think of ourselves as being born with either a higher or lower emotional intelligence, much as we are with cognitive intelligence, we may understand the patterns in our lives. For example, we might recognize we are prone to addictive behaviors such as smoking and drinking, which will serve a purpose for us but could also harm our health.
Why Tackle Your Self-Image
We've read a lot about how people want to reinvent their self-image. For some, this looks like quitting smoking. For others, it involves daily meditation to increase mindfulness and to achieve goals such as higher productivity at work. For still others, there's a desire to make amends for past relationships and to surround oneself with more positive influences. Wherever you're at in life, working on your self-image is one of the few things that will cost nothing but will make you happier. You are the only person with the ability to improve how you feel regardless of what goes on around you. If you can increase your self-esteem, which for many is the goal of psychotherapy, you may be less dependent on bad habits.
What We Recommend
Take time to help yourself achieve what's important to you. We suggest making a list of the changes that you want to see in your life. Some people call this writing a bucket list. If you're diagnosed with stage 3 cancer, this kind of list takes on a different urgency. However, a bucket list could be full of items that realistically you will never do. We want to help you change your life for the better in the present!
You can download the 'Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Guide' to inspire healthy eating habits for general wellbeing.