These Phrases Determine How Emotionally Secure You Are According To Harvard-trained Psychologist

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Emotionally secure ooze empowerment, confidence, and a sense of ease within themselves. Dr. Cortney Warren, a clinical psychologist and author, found questions and phrases that can help you with introspection and discover your levels of emotional security. It takes work to reach high levels of emotional security, but once you do, you will no longer seek external validation. Let’s see where you stand and what you can do to be more secure and, therefore, more comfortable by being your authentic self. 

Understanding emotional security 


Emotional safety or emotional security is a set of skills that makes one feel confident about life’s challenges. Similar to emotional intelligence, an emotionally secure person knows when to be vulnerable and how to express their feelings in a healthy way. While most of these skills are learned in childhood, there is always space for self-improvement. 

The power of saying no 


Warren, a Harvard-trained psychologist, explains that emotionally secure people know their boundaries. This includes knowing when to say no based on one’s needs, desires, and beliefs. Learning to say no is a powerful tool that will help reduce stress regarding obligations that might overwhelm one or make one feel uncomfortable. 

Taking criticism


Another necessary acceptance of feeling emotional safety is taking criticism for what it is. It is not personal, and instead of lashing out or doubting themselves, Warren noted that secure people accept criticism and even thank the person who pointed out their mistakes.

Readiness to change 

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Part of growth is the ability to adapt and change. This is an essential part of relationships, and emotionally secure people accept someone’s pleas. Instead, they are glad to hear their partner’s or friend’s input and willing to reconsider it to make it better for everyone. 



Impulsive or lack of reactions can show how emotionally secure a person feels. Emotions might be high, but if you are mature and secure, you can take time off to gather your thoughts and feelings instead of reacting impulsively. You can say you are irritated and need time, but you will revisit the discussion later.

Being predictable


Some believe that being predictable can be tedious. Still, only emotionally secure people can be transparent, making it easier for those close to them to know what to expect from them. Being aware of your shortcomings is expected, but sometimes it is okay to say that this is who you are and you always were, so people can take it or leave it.

Trusting your abilities

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In times of uncertainty, do you get easily overwhelmed and you can’t think clearly because anxiety seems to be running the show? Or, is there a part of you that knows you have all the tools to overcome any challenge? Emotional security gives you a sense that things will be okay because they believe in themselves. 

Always evolving 

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Sometimes, we evolve with others, but other times, we grow because that’s what we want from ourselves. Growing up, pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, and always being up for learning is not only a sign of an emotionally secure person, but it can help you become more secure in your abilities. 

Showing empathy 


It is much easier to be empathic and non-judgmental when you are secure in yourself. Being compassionate means knowing how to approach a person in need and offering to be there. The non-judgmental part means you are not jumping to conclusions about a person based on a day off. 

Trying and failing 

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Emotionally secure people have a sense of inner safety that pushes them forward. If they don’t succeed the first time, they will try again. Life’s full of trial-and-error situations, so even attempting to do something that might not be your cup of tea can bring you close to emotional safety. 

Standing up for what you believe in 


Dr. Warren observed that inner confidence helps navigate conflicts and embrace vulnerability without seeking external validation. This also includes knowing what’s important to you and not caring what others think. 

Recognizing emotionally safe people 


Emotional safety has its face. People look calmer, listen intently, and share their emotions when suited. In contrast, an unsafe person might be defensive and tense, and since they can’t express themselves, they often appear toxic. Repairing emotional damage to get to the place of safety is a task, but the rewards are worth it.  

Kate Smith, a self-proclaimed word nerd who relishes the power of language to inform, entertain, and inspire. Kate's passion for sharing knowledge and sparking meaningful conversations fuels her every word.