• Dr Phoebe Lau

What is emotional wealth?

Do you ever feel like you’re running on an empty tank? Or that you feel like you have no more to give? Daily pressures, big life stressors, and past challenges can burn us out.

This is when you know that your stockpile of emotional “wealth” has dwindled to your last few dollars. Emotional wealth is your bank balance of emotional and mental reserve. Like money in our bank accounts, our emotional and mental reserve is finite. Every time we focus our attention and energy on something that is stressful, upsetting or burdensome, we are spending from our reserve. Spending from our emotional reserve is unavoidable - we can’t escape the little, medium, and large stressors that pop up. 

Now let’s imagine that each of these stressors has a price tag, and every time your attention and energy is spent on these stressors it deducts credit from your emotional bank account. 

For example:

- Disagreement with my partner ($2,000)

- Worrying about a presentation ($800)

- Sitting in peak hour traffic ($300) 

- Organising a birthday party for the weekend ($200)

- Cooking dinner for the family after a long day at work ($50) 

This racks up a hefty bill!

Obviously, the “costs” of these moments vary for different people and a few of these examples may not even come up on some people’s radar. But, you might have guessed that your emotional reserve can be quickly sapped up by all these unpleasant or stressful experiences. If we don’t have regular habits of topping up our emotional bank accounts we run into the chance of emotional and mental poverty. This poverty can feel like burn out - we’re exhausted, anxious, irritable, and overwhelmed. We find ourselves more prone to arguments with loved ones. Things that we would normally handle with little stress becomes a big burden. 

Photo by Anthony Tran

Now, we can top up this reserve through a combination of two ways. One way is through external rewards like doing things we love or spending time with those we love. The second (critical) way is to build internal, cognitive and emotional resources to amplify the enjoyment of external rewards, calm our stress response, and build resilience. The flow on effect from having a rich emotional reserve is that we feel connected, curious, compassionate, creative and calm. We are more able to give to others because we are not living on our last few emotional dollars.

Imagine how a rich emotional reserve would feel for you?

What would you be able to do differently?

How would your life be different?

The methods for building emotional wealth vary from person to person because of our different personalities, backgrounds, and preferences. You can subscribe (top right) to learn more general ways of building emotional wealth or book an initial session to discuss how you could build your own stockpile of emotional wealth. 

#emotionalwealth #emotionalwellbeing #innercollective #womensmentalhealth #mentalhealth #mentalhealthblog #melbourneclinicalpsychologist #melbournepsychology

28 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All