During recovery, both physical and emotional development will have to occur to help you through the transitional period. Your emotions can support not only your mental health but also your physical well being, all integral aspects of the recovery process. Psychologist Dr. Scott Barry Kaufman recently wrote that “positive characteristics, such as optimism, vitality, meaning, and subjective life satisfaction are immensely important in their own right. The related fields of positive psychology and health psychology focus on rigorous scientific investigations of how people adapt to life’s inevitable challenges, and how that is related (or even leads to) a better quality of life.”

Positive emotions can in fact provide health benefits and support your journey toward holistic wellness. Optimism may have a protective effect on the heart. Experiencing true awe can reduce inflammatory markers, and compassion can help improve specific vagus nerve function. Gratitude is also being studied for its effects on heart health and immunity, and self-compassion may improve health-related outcomes. You can read more about these health benefits at the link below. Positive thinking and the emotional world can really affect the recovery process as you move through your transition toward sobriety.

Click here to read more from Carolyn Gregoire for Huffington Post.