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Chapter 4. Understanding Mental Health > Mental Health And Emotions

Mental Health And Emotions

To a great degree, mental health is related to how well you manage your emotions. This includes both feeling good about yourself as well as feeling good about interactions with your family, friends, colleagues and co-workers. The ability to experience and express emotions is uniquely human. Our emotional make-up is that part of us that contributes to the elation of great joy or the depths of profound sorrow. Emotional adjustment also contributes to maintaining an evenness through the ups and downs of life without the demands of experiencing continual extreme highs and/or lows. Emotions also warn us of danger and give us a way to express and receive love and affection as well as anger and sorrow.

Most of us know that when we get physically sick it is usually best to visit a medical doctor. This person can prescribe treatment that usually alleviates the problem. Thus, physical illness has a fairly direct relationship between symptom and cure. The world of emotions is far more complex. For example, many of us have been taught not to show our emotions. Others somehow have learned that we should not even have emotions (feelings) about certain events. Males in particular have frequently received messages from parents and/or society that “real men” should strictly control their emotions. The assumption is that the world is better dealt with on the basis of logic rather than feelings.


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