The link between a sense of self empowerment and health is one that doctors are only recently starting to recognize.
There are different definitions and interpretations of the word empowerment – but when it comes to your physical and emotional health, empowerment is crucial.
What is Self Empowerment?
- The right to make the decisions that impact your life – and the ability to take responsibility for them
- Access to information, services and options so that you can make informed decisions
- Taking control of your own life in order to affect positive change
- Understanding that you are not alone and that you can make a difference
- Learning new skills, improving self-image and continuing to grow as a person
Self Empowerment and Your Physical Well-Being
A lot of people want control of our bodies and our lives in today’s “free” world.
There is a pill for every ailment and a fad for every pound you want to lose. We are told to take this, eat that, drink this, believe that, and statistics show we’re doing as we’re told.
We are unhealthier than ever before in history – we may be living longer lives but our quality of life is questionable.
When it comes to your health, you must be your own advocate, and you need self empowerment to do just that.
Top 3 Health Self Empowerment Tips
1. Don’t hold back information!
Whether you think that little nagging pain in your side is important or not – whether it embarrasses you or not – your physician cannot help if you withhold information. Keep notes about your symptoms, eating habits, over-the-counter medications you take more than twice a week, or recent changes to your, before your appointment.
2. Ask questions!
Your doctor will take the time to answer them, and if he/she doesn’t, you need to find a doctor who will. A good physician should be able to answer your questions, or give you the resources to get the answers you need.
Write down what you want to ask before your appointment, and write down the answers your doctor gives you. Don’t allow yourself to be intimidated by a doctor’s busy schedule!
Remember, you had to take time out of your life for the appointment. If they were a client or customer who came to your job, you can be assured they would demand the time and attention they felt they were owed.
3. Remember to follow up!
If you get home and realize you’ve forgotten something or are confused about instructions, call or email the office. If you have tests done and don’t hear back about the results, get on the phone.
If a prescription doesn’t feel right when you start taking it, call the office immediately and ask about possible side effects.
Doctors often prescribe the “most popular” medication being pushed on the market – but it may not be right for you. Also, don’t discount alternative or holistic practitioners.
When it comes to the health of your body – you are in control. Remember that doctors, nurses and assistants see dozens of people every day. Often, you’re a patient file – not an individual.
The only thing they see is what has been noted in your file, so always look out for your body’s best interests!
How Empowerment Improves Emotional Health
There are so many attacks on our emotional well-being in the world we live in. Some things – such as crime, poverty and war –are ultimately beyond our ability to control as individuals. What we can control is how we safeguard our emotional health.
Top 3 Emotional Empowerment Tips
1. Surround yourself with positive people!
Look around you and truly evaluate the people in your life. Everyone should be considered: co-workers, family and friends. Those individuals you allow into your life should contribute to your daily existence – not take away from it.
Ideal relationships are those that encourage your growth, that withhold judgment but aren’t afraid to be honest with you if they disagree.
Surround yourself with people who accept you as the person you are right now, and support your growth and self-improvement. Toxic personalities have no place in a positive emotional environment.
Recognize the “up” people and limit or remove the “down” people from your daily life. Don’t forget how important it is to be the type of friend that you would most like to have.
2. Take responsibility for every choice in your life!
When you take full responsibility for situations that have gone wrong – not simply “your share” – you enable yourself to see the pattern, gain closure and guard against repeating the mistake in the future.
This is crucial because humans tend to repeat mistakes again and again – hoping for a different outcome. By taking full responsibility and walking away with a lesson learned – even if it is a painful one – you grow, mature and change…the cornerstones of emotional health.
3. Be the conductor in your life symphony!
There is nothing to be gained when you allow people and events to push you in random directions. When you reach 100 years old, will you look back and see a life that “just happened” or will you see a life you actively participated in?
Where do you want to go? Who do you want to be? Each person is responsible for her own life and her own choices. Leaving life up to “whatever happens” is not going to be as fulfilling as guiding your life in the direction you want to go. Make a plan, take the reins and keep track of your progress.
Be Your Biggest Fan
The first step to physical and emotional health is empowerment – understanding that your mind and body are your responsibility.
If you don’t put yourself first – if you allow what happens externally to dictate your total body/mind health – no one else is going to stop that pattern.
Each person has his own burdens to bear. Put down what isn’t truly important, take up the cause of your own well-being and let empowerment into your life.