Coping With Grief
When coping with the loss of a loved one, it can be hard to ‘get back to normal.’
After the funeral, life goes on – The sun keeps rising and setting, the world around us keeps turning, and we have to learn how to move on with our lives. It can be very hard sometimes.
Preparing Yourself for Coping with Grief
Help prepare for these times of grief by creating a list of comforting or distracting activities. This is not a suggestion to run away from your feelings of hurt, sadness, and loneliness, it’s important to feel those feelings. However, when you feel you are starting to be swallowed by them and you can’t function, it is important to find healthy ways to help bring yourself back to feeling better in the present moment.
Allow time for grieving, however when feelings of grief or anxiety start to come up outside of your grieving time, turn to your list of comforting activities to begin to comfort yourself. Here are some ideas to use or help you think of your own.
- Go for a walk.
- Write down things that you are thankful for (a gratitude list).
- Make your favourite meal.
- Spend time with a pet, or get a pet. They can be incredibly comforting.
- Do a random act of kindness for someone you know or for a stranger.
- Listen to some soothing or uplifting music or watch your favourite movie or TV show.
- Reach out to call or email someone who makes you feel happy or can comfort you.
- Donate money or things to a charity in the name of your loved one.
- Meditate or stop and just be still. Breath deeply.
- If you feel troubled, give yourself permission to feel ok with feeling troubled.
- Read a book or article you’ve been meaning to read.
- Make plans for things you will look forward to doing.
- Think about the future.
- Learn breathing exercises to help you feel calm or accepting of your sadness.
- Forgive someone or something that is long over due.
- Create a list of your best qualities and why people like having you in their lives.
- Do something creative.
- Take a long soothing bath or shower.
- Pamper yourself by doing or buying something you normally wouldn’t do.
- Enjoy a soothing hot drink.
Professional Support for Coping with Grief
If you find yourself needing or wanting more help, make arrangements to do get the professional help you need. Grief Counsellors are listed online or in the telephone book.
Your mental health is very important. Look around in community for churches and support groups, or therapists that specialise in grief. Your loved one who has passed would likely want you to be happy, as well as those family, friends, neighbours and pets who are still in your life.
If you find yourself completely alone reach out to local services to connect with people in a similar position.