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Wellness Red Flags: 10 Signs You’re Not Taking Care of Yourself


Do you know how to connect a physical issue with an emotional dilemma? Put otherwise, it is possible for a physical symptom – like an upset tummy – to stem from another realm of wellness, like emotional distress. Health and wellness is a complex system. All the different spheres of life – mental, emotional, spiritual, physical, social – are interconnected. When one part gets neglected, the repercussions can pop up in other ways.

Creating a healthy lifestyle – and caring for oneself properly – truly requires balance. Take a look at 10 warning signs that may signal a need for more attention to health and wellness overall.

Wellness Red Flags

Mental Red Flags

1. Inability to Focus

Are you having a tough time concentrating or completing tasks that used to be easy? When there’s a noticeable change in your ability to focus, it may be a sign that your body is struggling in another area – like lack of sleep, poor nutrition, overexertion, or anxiety.

2. Severe Forgetfulness

We’re not talking about a little slip-up here or there. Forgetting small things is common. However, severe forgetfulness – like leaving the oven on a few hours after you’re finished cooking, or forgetting to show up for work – can be a red flag that something more serious is affecting your health.

Emotional Red Flags

3. Tension Headache

Stressed? There’s a good chance you can feel it! Tension headaches can be a very physical repercussion of imbalance in another area of life. Though tensions headaches can be caused by physical stressors, like overworking or poor sleep habits, the root cause is more often tied to emotional distress and fatigue.

Spiritual Red Flags

4. Feeling Lost

We’re not talking about directions here. Spirituality is very personal, but no matter what ideology you connect with, it can be dangerous to fall into prolonged despair. Try and reconnect with your community and improve your social/emotional wellbeing when you see this warning sign.

5. ‘Going Through the Motions’ without Belief

Another spiritual red flag involves ‘going through the motions’ without conviction. Taking time to stop, reflect, and switch up your routine can bring mindfulness back into your beliefs.

Physical Red Flags

6. Sleepiness/Insomnia

Bad sleep habits can have detrimental effects on all aspects of health, but they can also stem from other issues, like stress and poor nutrition. Reset your sleep pattern before it becomes a vicious cycle.

7. Constant Cough/Cold

Did you know that emotional stress, lack of sleep, and poor nutrition can actually lower your immune system? If it seems like you’re always sick with a common cold, consider how your health habits may be playing a role.

8. Physical Symptoms of Anxiety

Chest pain, tight muscles, stomach issues – these are all very physical symptoms, but they could also stem from other stressors, like emotional trauma or social anxiety.

Social Red Flags

9. Over-Participation

Staying social is great! But feeling the need to never say ‘no’ is dangerous. Make sure your social agenda is balanced, and don’t feel pressured to participate in every single activity out there.

10. Repeatedly Ditching Plans Last Minute

Feel like you’ve been cancelling a lot lately? Take a hard look at why you might be saying no at the last minute. Is there a physical symptom – like frequent headaches – stopping you? Or perhaps you’re nervous about meeting new people. Think about it – finding the root cause may help improve your wellbeing in multiple areas.

Recognize these red flags and connect the dots – if you do, you’ll be much healthier overall!

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Dr. Candice Seti


California-licensed Clinical Psychologist, Certified Nutrition Coach, and Certified Personal Trainer

Dr. Candice Seti

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