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How to Develop Your Emotional Muscle to Win

By Sandy Schroeder

When setbacks occur, most of us bounce back, but sometimes we need help. When one too many things happen, it can be harder to rally, but psychologists say we have the resilience to survive. We just need to develop our emotional muscles.

Wherever you are, fielding daily challenges, or in the midst of a real crisis, you have the resources to cope, drawing on your own skills and experience.

Vote for optimism – After a job loss, a person may feel defeated. Another person may say, “Well this is tough, but maybe it’s a chance to decide what I really want to do.” Whatever problems or losses you have encountered, it is usually easier to hang in there if you stick with the optimists. They are usually looking for new options, too, instead of dwelling on the downside.

Reverse the stress switch – If you find it too easy to let a little stress turn into more stress, stop and start over. See what you can do to picture a different outcome. A recent Harvard study found people who saw stress as a stimulus to work harder and do better, did just that. They kept going and improved their scores. Think about the way you see things and weed out the negatives.

Look forward not back – When things happen, it is easy to assume the blame and dwell on that mistake. But problems usually have many facets, and you would be wise not to assume all of the blame. Instead, start looking ahead to the logical next steps.

Help others - When you look around to see how you can help others, you may broaden your own focus, and regain a new perspective. When I look around, I often see people facing bigger challenges than the ones I have. Sometimes I can make a difference by helping them. When I do, I always feel more optimistic about life in general.

Take stress breaks – Psychologists remind us we will never completely eliminate stress from our lives. But we can take breaks. When you have had enough stress for awhile, opt for an afternoon off. Go to a movie or have lunch with a friend. Take your family camping for the weekend. When you return, everything may look better.

Break new ground – As you deal with daily problems, look around for other things you would like to do. This may be the time to take that cooking class, or start working out with your son or daughter. As we fill our lives with an assortment of positive things, we often achieve a better perspective. Our emotional muscle gets stronger and life moves ahead.

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in League City, Tex. 

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