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  How to Prevent Emotional Bankruptcy
Written by Kirk Wilkinson   
Your self-worth is not tied to your net-worth. You are not your job, you are not your bank account, and you are not defined by the economy. While we all know this intuitively, it is hard to remember as we are constantly bombarded with bad...


Your self-worth is not tied to your net-worth. You are not your job, you are not your bank account, and you are not defined by the economy. While we all know this intuitively, it is hard to remember as we are constantly bombarded with bad news about the economy, politics, finances and debt.

In 1987 Stephen Covey was one of the first to define the concept of an emotional bank account. When we are emotionally solvent we have a greater capacity to cope and handle setbacks with ease. However, when we are overdrawn emotionally, even the smallest of setbacks can seem disastrous. In these hard times many of us are so emotionally overdrawn that emotional bankruptcy is eminent. You know you’re overdrawn emotionally when you say something like, “I am at the end of my rope.” Or, “I don’t know how much more of this I can take.” Let it be an indicator that you need to make a mega-deposit in your emotional bank account and thus prevent emotional bankruptcy.

There are simple ways to make mega-deposits into your emotional bank account Making mega-deposits will give you the ability to cope, to eliminate stress, gain greater insight to your problems and realize that your self-worth is not tied to your net-worth. Self-worth is created from the inside out.

Here are five tips on how to make mega-deposits in your emotional bank account.

1. Don’t underestimate your ability to cope. You don’t need to be afraid. No matter what you are facing, someone has had to face worse. You don’t have to look very far to find someone less fortunate. Many of them are victorious over their circumstances. You can be too! Whatever it is, you can handle it. You can do it!

2. Don't panic - panic only makes matters worse. You can underreact so that you are not emotionally invested and therefore able to be more objective. Take a step back, take a deep breath and look at your situation from a different angle. You will be surprised what you find.

3. Limit your daily dosage of news - don't fuel the fire adding to stress and anxiety by being glued to CNN or other news programs or surfing the internet for the latest news or blog. There are a lot of smart people addressing the issues, leave the debate up to them. Pick one newscaster or one news program you will watch or listen to and then call it quits for the day. I would also recommend you don’t watch the late night news. Watch or read something uplifting before you retire for the night.

4. Surround yourself with positive thinkers. This may require you to step away from negative conversations. Surrounding yourself with positive thinkers will keep your optimism high and allow you to think more clearly.

5. Find someone in need and give service. Don’t just look for someone who needs financial assistance. Find someone to serve in some way. You will lift your spirits and it will do you more good than the person you are helping. Give your time, your emotions and yourself to someone in need and it will make your life seem so much better.

Just as you would spend time and effort to prevent financial bankruptcy you should spend time and effort preventing emotional bankruptcy. Any positive emotion is a deposit and any negative emotion is a debit in your emotional bank account. You can live a life of emotional wealth; you can be emotionally solvent no matter what! You can find other tips on how to be happy and prevent emotional bankruptcy in my book, The Happiness Factor: How to be Happy no Matter What!

Kirk Wilkinson – Happiness expert and author of The Happiness Factor: How to be Happy no Matter WHAT! www.thehappinessfactor.com