Emotional equilibrium is a phrase that is often used, but what exactly does it mean? It isn’t as easy to gauge your equilibrium as it is to take your blood pressure, but most of us know when we are out of whack. You feel like there’s no energy for anything extra, your patience is very thin, and you find yourself getting frustrated or angry over little things.
Emotional equilibrium is not the same for everyone, and it’s important that you find just the right balance. Before you can find your balance, you need to assess yourself in three areas (ABC):
- Affective – how you have been feeling,
- Behavioral – what you have been doing, and
- Cognitive – what you have been thinking.
Engage in an Emotional Checkup (Affective). What is the predominant mood that you’ve been experiencing – angry, joyful, stressed? Do you seem unusually down lately? If so, is there a good reason for it? You might think that these questions are common sense, but most people don’t take the time to do an emotional checkup on themselves. Also, it’s important to check your expectations of yourself, situations, and others. Are they realistic? Often people have expectations that just can’t be fulfilled, and they set themselves up for feelings of disappointment or frustration. Make sure that what you want is realistic and achievable.
Are you practicing mood-balancing strategies (Behavioral)? The key to emotional equilibrium is to behave in ways that create balance. Ask yourself if you have been doing anything on a regular basis that helps you to feel grounded. These strategies generally fall into three categories: