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Cultivating Emotional Wellbeing

Does buying stuff and discarding it after a while really make you content?

We have seen in The Story of Stuff how we are unaware of the true cost of things and how the advertising industry makes us feel discontented if we don’t have the latest and most up-to-date of everything!  Why do you think the fashion industry keeps making such big changes to clothing and accessories, for example?  Because you will feel forced to make the purchases which will keep you feeling fashionable and like your friends. Even better when you get your stuff before any of your friends! Oh! the admiration you get!  Of course, you realise you are just being manipulated.

Emotional wellbeing is about feeling good about yourself and knowing that you are living your life fully.  It is really all about good relationships and feeling loved and respected.

Some of us were not well enough loved in childhood, or felt we were not, as we had parents and siblings who could not express love and affection. The parents probably learned this from their parents, so we need to break this cycle.  Otherwise many of us grow up with an empty feeling inside, which no amount of stuff can alleviate.

Your relationships

Think about your relationships with your friends and with your family. Do you show the same respect and affection for your family as you do your friends?  If not, you might work on developing this part of your relationships, as coming home to a happy, supportive and well-adjusted family is a heartwarming experience.

Working on improving your emotional wellbeing

There are a number of ways you can work on your emotional wellbeing. Talk to people you trust and respect and ask them for feedback. Another way is to start to understand the role of empathy in relationships. Daniel Goleman has done terrific work on publicising this.  Read his book on Emotional Intelligence.

There is a simple technique called Emotional Freedom, very easy to learn and very effective.  Just try it next time you are feeling blue about some incident or something someone said.

Finally, getting involved with something bigger than yourself is one of the best ways to boost your emotional wellbeing.  Taking action on some of the suggestions in Aussie Whole Systems Change may well change your life!


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