After the loss of a loved one, it’s normal to feel like your whole world has been turned upside down. But, however you might be experiencing grief, there are often things you can do to alleviate the pain. Creating small, manageable healing goals is a cathartic way to deal with your bereavement whilst still honoring the memory of your loved one.
Focus on Your Health
Unfortunately, the shock that accompanies loss often leads to self-neglect and the abandonment of healthy habits. Stress-eating is an all too common coping mechanism for those dealing with grief. Although it may feel difficult at first, beginning a program of fitness and healthy eating is a step in the right direction. Studies have shown that exercise is a powerful tool that helps you combat the stress caused by grief by releasing endorphins. A balanced diet will increase your energy levels so you’ll have additional capacity to focus on your healing.
Create a Support System
Trying to handle loss on your own can lead to a myriad of mental health issues that will have a long-lasting impact on your life if not handled correctly. Create a support system by beginning one-on-one grief counseling. Once you’ve moved past the initial onslaught of emotions, it can be worth looking into attending a support group where you’ll be able to build relationships with others who’ve shared similar experiences.
Visit a Mental Health Professional
If you are struggling to manage your grief, many therapists are available online. Online therapy offers many of the same benefits as traditional therapy, but it is more convenient and accessible. You can choose when and where to have your sessions and have access to a greater number of mental health professionals, and you can communicate with your therapist from the comfort of your own home. In addition, online therapists are often less expensive than in-person therapists.
Revitalize Your Living Space
Whether you realize it or not, the state of your living environment can have a major impact on your mental state, affecting your mood, behavior, and your overall approach to those around you. Refreshing your living space can give you a clean slate after the loss of a loved one. By organizing, decluttering, and redecorating, you’ll start to feel renewed and hopeful for the future. During this process, you may also come across mementos that remind you of your lost loved one, which will allow you to further process your emotions by reminiscing on the times you’ve shared.
Prioritize Your Joy
Death is a shock to the system that inevitably causes us to reevaluate our own lives. It becomes more important than ever to spend time on the things that lift your spirits. Find solace in your hobbies, which can be as simple as listening to music or as complex as creating art that represents your feelings. By choosing to make time for the things that bring you happiness, you’ll refocus some of your energy on things that bring positivity to your life rather than being constantly consumed by your heartache.
Spend Time with Loved Ones
It’s more than likely that those closest to you are experiencing the same feelings that you are. Spending time together can help you process your emotions in a safe, loving environment. You could choose to look back at memories you’ve all shared with the person you’ve lost, or simply enjoy and appreciate each other’s presence. These moments will foster gratitude for your relationships and ultimately help fill the emptiness associated with the loss.
Grief is one of the most difficult aspects of the human experience, but by focusing on your health, visiting a therapist, prioritizing your needs, and spending time with family, you’ll find yourself growing through the pain rather than being engulfed by it.