Healthy ways to grieve and deal with loss
Losing a loved one, whether expected or sudden, can be a painful, confusing and frustrating time. You may be left with regrets or unanswered questions. You may be left feeling alone. But death is a part of everyone’s life, and we all go through it at some point. It is common for people to try to put on a brave face or bury their emotions to avoid feeling pain, but the healthiest way to deal with loss is to face it head on. Be active in the grieving process.
Everyone’s timeline for grief is different. Don’t rush the process and don’t put a cap on how long you can grieve. You may find initial comfort crying and talking with a friend or family member, and then continue to handle the grieving process very privately for months or even years after the loss.
You may be uncomfortable talking about your feelings to a family member, friend or professional. There are alternative ways of expression that will allow you to sort through your feelings and come to terms with the loss.
Engage in regular exercise to clear your head. Start a blog or journal to write out everything you feel and monitor your progress. Spend time outdoors. You may find comfort in prayer or talking to a religious figure. You may also find it effective to remember a person by reminiscing through old photos or clothing that will bring back positive memories of their life.
Many people become attached to particular item of clothing or jewelry that was worn by the person often. Wear these items daily as a small token of remembrance. That way, the person is always with you and can become a source of strength when you are feeling down. Recognize that one day, you may not feel like it’s necessary to wear these items anymore. That is okay.
Many people find comfort and acceptance in talking to a professional. You may need professional help if your relationships are suffering or you’re experiencing symptoms of depression. Sometimes, you can’t understand where your feelings are coming from and a therapist can help you by asking questions to help you get to the answer.