Emotional Bank Accounts and How to Balance Them

Your Emotional Bank Account: A System of Checks and Balances

Even the most resilient and optimistic of us wake up some mornings and feel like all the life has been sucked from our hearts. Most often, this happens when we are dealing with a long-term, stressful situation like issues around finances or difficulties in a relationship. It can also happen to us when we are offering serious emotional support to friends or relatives. Suddenly we find we are the ones feeling lost and down and we don’t know why.

Here’s the thing: We, all of us, have emotional bank accounts. The love we receive from others, the laughter shared with friends, the time we get to spend on hobbies we love and even the care we give ourselves pay in to that bank account.

The Strength to Keep Going

Most of us dip into out accounts on a daily basis. It’s the place we go to when we need to find a smile for a difficult customer, or when we realize that deadline is looming and we have to cancel dinner reservations or someone we care about needs a shoulder to cry on. For the most part, we don’t even recognize when we are doing it. This is partly because those small incidents in life pass and what you took out of the account quite quickly gets replaced by a hug from someone we love, an extra-long bubble bath or relaxing with a close friend. We dip into that emotional bank account and find the strength to keep going and most difficulties pass and we pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off and move forward.

Keep Paying in

However, we sometimes hit difficulties that are not over in a matter of days. Sometimes relationships start to crumble or become unhealthy. Sometimes a job is lost and finances start to spiral. Or, someone we love becomes ill and needs our care. At times like these, we dig in a little deeper to our emotional “savings” to get us through. It is at times like these that we need to find a way to keep paying in. No matter how difficult the situation, we have to find time to step back from it and take a breath. We have to take the time to not just deal with the crisis but live, because frankly, if you don’t, what are you getting through the crisis for?

An Emotional Black Hole

If your entire life becomes the problem and you let friends and the things you love fall to the wayside and you don’t give yourself some TLC, then one morning you’ll wake up consumed by an emotional black hole. You will be left feeling exhausted, empty and tired. The best way to ensure this doesn’t happen is to tell someone as soon as a crisis raises it’s head. Share your worries and your fears. Allow others to help keep your emotional account topped up and don’t give up on the things you love. Still find time to read, watch your favorite show or have that glass of wine at the end of the day. Try, even though it is hard. Remember that you are struggling through something, not with something and you’re struggling through to reach something better at the other side. Don’t loose sight of that. And if you see someone in crisis, don’t let them go into the red. Pay something into their emotional banks. You’ll be paying it forward to another human being in the most useful way possible.

47 thoughts on “Emotional Bank Accounts and How to Balance Them

  1. Amanda

    This was so beautifully put! I needed to read this as I have recently the lowest point I have in a very long time. I feel optimistic now that things will definitely get better as this reminded me I DO have the power to make things better in my life. I want to let go of bad habits in 2014. Blessed Be. 🙂

  2. Kathy

    I can’t believe I read this article today. I am so deep with emotional pain, that I don’t feel like Ill survive through it.
    You are spot on about feeding our emotional bank with positive things. Unfortunately, I was so blindsided, that I realized too late that I had nothing to draw from. I have hibernated into myself, unable to do anything, even for me.
    It’s a horrific place to be, and I don’t have the answers to work through it.
    Your article is a very good heads-up, for people to prepare for those unknown turns in life that one never expects or imagined,could happen to them.They should be better prepared to hanle
    Life, if it does start to go downhill.

  3. Pauline S. Jensen

    Enjoyed reading what you had to say. It’s so true. (smiley face) I think God gives each of us specific gifts which we can use and magnify during our lies. I have been blessed with always seeing the glass half FULL, never half empty. Despite some amazingly difficult times, I manage to keep smiling through it all. Those who don’t have this gift struggle more than I do.

  4. chloePsychic Chloe

    Excellent Article Toby!

    I just love the metaphor of the “bank account”. Absolutley brilliant! Thank You for sharing this!

    Love & Light!

    Psychic Chloe [ext: 9421]

  5. Monica Noriega

    I feel like im always stressed out form my emotional bank account. And True i do feel happy when i spend it but don’t alway put alot into it. I’m single so i guess this is my only happiness because i have no one to help with that emotional bank account.

  6. Pam

    All of the psychic contributions I read here are interesting and valuable to a certain extent, but this one really nailed it for me, as I feel I’ve been running on emotional “fumes” for way, way too long (to use a gas metaphor). Thank you.

  7. Ivy walker

    I want to know if this man really care for me,he is not stay in the united state,he live in uk landon England is name is Nigel Shald,please let me no thank you,

  8. michele


  9. Maryann

    I know the feeling! Sometimes I give of myself until people want more than I can give. And they show no thankfulness for what I’ve done for them! (This hurts!)

    Great article! Time to step back and absorb this message for the future dealings with others!

  10. Karin Morrison

    I read my horoscope almost every day and appreciate all you people. I know it is your job and I would love to talk to each and everyone in person. Unfortunately I cannot do so, since I am buried in much more than anyone could ever imagine! So … please continue your letters, as you have done so far. Especially like the one today, which I needed.
    I Read, I listen and try to follow your advice.

    I am a believer in God and Jesus Christ. If He ties any of you to my very stressful life, then He will also tel me to get in contact with you personally.

    God Bless! Karin

  11. sherpeace

    The things I did for my in-laws (and still do for my father-in-law) actually seem to add to my emotional bank account. They are always pleasant to be around and I enjoy(ed) their company. My father-in-law has always buys me lunch after I take him (or her) to the dr.’s or for tests.
    I do get it. Sometimes our own parents have anger built up for years and that would be a whole nother story.

  12. Greta Corber

    My son is in the hospital, and I can’t concentrate on much else, because I lost his twin brother nineteen months ago. He was 62 yrs of age. I am frightened.

  13. sugar

    this struck mor than just a nerve! my worst issue is the guilt i ALLOW people to make me feel- like if i jus need a full day 2 myself….nex thin i know i am receivin negatve vibes/comments re: my small request 4som “me time”. true, i true its hard 2 shake someone in distress, or n my space in thoz inappropriate times. but am learnin how 2 balance all thiz. (hell sometimes i “pretend” am not even home…lol. if thats My Bad..well thn hey….how else will i regain my emotional stability. aftrall, im no good to a loved one if i am no good to myself! As is ladies n gentlemen.

  14. Cindy

    Nice subject in an interesting way. I have never thought about my emotions being in a “bank acct. sort of way, but it really is. Emotional intelligence allows people like this to be able to give support drawn from a “bank acct.” even when their own acct. is low. It gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling for the one that I could give love and support to yet leave a little there for myself…but not so much that you are really missing out. I tend to be a rather sensitive person and usually can feel peoples pain as if my own (seriously). Help others…and help yourself. Have a great day all!

  15. Donelda

    These things are all true but sometime’s it’s not easy to determine we’re in trouble because some of us are so use to dealing with emotional & mental problems that we don’t notice when things take a turn until it’s later down the road. Mental Health week coming up Jan 28/2014 is also a good time to listen to what’s being said and take steps to rid ourselves from depression and see a professional to get the help we need.

  16. Corey

    WOW, That emotional bank account teaching is Amazing! My heart is in so much gratitude for this lesson. Thank you Toby for your kind deposit into my account as it will get paid forward!!

  17. April

    Thank you for your deposit into all of our emotional accounts with your wonderful perspective! As I read your words, I felt them wrapping around me like a gigantic warm hug. They put a smile in my thoughts, and for all that, I’m so very grateful for your post.
    Much Love & Thanks – April

  18. Cynthia Parkinson

    wow I have been told by several psychic advisers that i will have lots of luck in next few months because of my birthdate and something to with an alinement of the stars Dec 26 I won $2000 on a $5.00 lottery scrach off ticket a wk later $200 and yesterday with several tickets I won almost $500 Needless to say I have never been a winner. Every ticket i get it seems certain numbers are always on it. So i think i will try a couple of lottery tickets where i pick the numbers who wouldnt want to win a couple 100,000,000I WOULD LOVE TO HAVE A PSYCHIC READING

  19. Dan Sanderson

    It’s so nice nice to be reminded of a ‘struggle through something’ and not ‘with something.’ That idea in itself makes the way to the other side, not necessarily clearer, but a little bit easier. It’s the difference between struggling to find a way through a jungle and struggling with the jungle itself. Thanks!

  20. Alicia

    I love what you wrote it describes my life exactly.I am going to write it down and share it with my counselor and physciatrist. I have been being treated with medications and CBT for 4 months now and I am not seeing a real big change in the way I feel.In July 2013 I started having panic attacks upon getting ready for work ,on a daily basis for 6 weeks , due to a change in supervisors at work. My love relationship had already been falling apart for 2 years and my sister was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in July 2013, she passed in September 2013, my finances are high and my income is low.In August I went to the doctor and told him, I felt like my life was falling apart. My doctor has been treating me for depression since 1999, I was diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder in 2005.I also was diagnosed with Panic Disorder with Agoraphobia and Major Deppressive Affective Disorder by my physciatrist. I have become someone who does not even know who I am anymore. I try really hard to work on myself and on a lot of days I just sit and stare at the training modules with a blank piece of paper in front of me.my mind is blank and I search it for the answers that do not come. I get really frustrated and have crying outbursts for no reason . The only one I can come up with is just where did I lose myself along the way? I am currently un-employed because I quit my job due to the daily stressors there. I wish I had the money to talk to you. I feel it would give me some in sight on what my future holds. I thank you from the bottom of my heart , for posting emotional bank accounts because ,it may help me to find my way back. God Bless you!!

  21. Michele

    Excellent article Toby. I frequently read the blogs on this website and this is the first time I felt inspired enough to comment, I can totally relate to it. I consider myself a positive person and I try to help others when I can, but I need to be more positive in my own life. This article is very helpful. Thank you. Michele

  22. rosecoccarr

    there are things I wasn’t thinking that I hurt people..i might of said things I didn’t mean..but I forget what I said..cause that is the way I am ..I might hurt some people with words but they do it with action..but people don’t see it ..cause it is done without people seeing it..but words can be jurd and that is why people get into trouble..all mouth no actiom all action no mouth..that is the way it goes,, but with the mouth it is more trouble for people…not action I agree words can hurt if was meant to be ..but in my case they were only words..nothing more..

  23. kim

    U r an angel and guide that arrived in my life right on time. Thank you for the emotional deposit I will save something for me and I will make sure to deposits in other account like yours please have a great day and thanks you and the Californiapsychic team. No worries.

  24. Donna

    Just wanted to let you I really enjoyed this reading. I’m going to keep this and reread it to remind me to keep depositing into my emotional bank account!

  25. Faith ext. 9608Faith ext. 9608

    This is such a good article Toby. Thank you for your wisdom, caring nature and thoughtful countenance.

    Blessings, Faith ext. 9608


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