How do you become emotionally healthy?
When is the last time you saw a kid throw a tantrum? It’s not a pretty sight.
But do you know what’s even uglier?
Ok, they don’t fall on the floor and roll around (typically), but they do other equally immature things…
- The silent treatment.
- Say “nothing” when asked what is bothering them.
- Mope around the house and refuse to talk about it.
- Say they are not upset while secretly sabotaging another person.
- Gossip / slander.
See what I mean?
Taking charge of your emotional health
Emotionally healthy people don’t do the things listed above. Why? Because they stay on top of what is going on inside their own souls, and deal with what they find in a healthy (godly) way.
One way to approach that process is through periodically taking an emotional inventory. Just like you’d assess your bank account every so often (I hope), or check the oil level in your car (I hope), you need to check your emotional condition.
How do you go about doing one of these emotional inventories?
You ask yourself questions, a TON of questions… and you work hard to be honest with yourself.
Here’s a sample list of the type of questions you should be asking… and please know these are not all the questions you could ask…
Emotional health only comes through truth
In other words, you need the LORD to show you what is true about what you are feeling and what is not true.
That’s the only way you’ll be able to know how you should be thinking and acting.
Emotions rightly handled will bring great peace and contentment.
Emotions wrongly handled will wreck your life, and the lives of those you love.
Lean heavily on God’s truth…
- Feeling unloved? – remember that nothing can separate you from God’s love – Romans 8:38-39
- Feeling condemned? – remind yourself that Christ has taken away all your condemnation – Romans 8:1
- Feeling hopeless? – trust God to work all things for your good – Romans 8:28
Learn to use the truth of scripture to bring your unruly emotions into line… It won’t be easy, but it will be worth it.
Help your children be emotionally healthy too
A tantrum is evidence that kids don’t know how to handle emotions either. Too often parents don’t know what to do with a tantrum, or an emotional outburst… and so they do nothing.
Don’t do your kids such a disservice. Help them unpack what they are feeling. As their parent, it’s your job.
Talk with them about their emotions… sometimes multiple choice questions prove helpful.
“Johnny, what are you feeling? Is it…
Then teach them what to do with the answers they discover (sound familiar?). Teach them God’s truth about what they are feeling… just like you have to teach it to yourself.
Speak it, talk about it, explain it. Read the Bible with them. Your kids need the truth of the scriptures to illuminate their lives just like you do.
Some helpful resources for teaching your kids scripture…