Healthy Ways to Deal with LossApril 2, 2013
When we have lost someone close to us for whatever reason, it often can be an emotionally devastating experience. This trauma sometimes gains momentum instead of slowing or calming down, and that’s when it becomes critical to both your mental and physical health to gain control over it. While this can sound like an impossible feat if you are in the middle of your grief process, if you take it step by step you will have a much easier time of it. Break your goal of recovery into manageable chunks.
Change Your Routine
It’s been said by some psychologists that if you break your physical routine you can make it easier to break a mental routine. For instance, if you have a morning routine where you do things in a certain order, start doing them in a different order. Put your left sock on before your right for a change, or brush your teeth before you shower if you usually do it the other way around. Put a post-it note on your mirror to remind yourself if you have to. This is often the best first step—changing habits to change your thinking.
Hold Loss Conferences with Friends and Family
Besides providing you with a pre-formed group for support, you are also acknowledging that you are not alone. You are recognizing that others have also experienced loss, and you can then form a coalition and work on ways to deal with the emotions. This is especially reassuring for children, who sometimes become afraid that they will lose others as well as the one they have already lost.
Write in a Journal
Whether you show it to others or not is of no importance. This journal is not intended to make you an overnight novelist. It is, however, a tool for you to use to get at the deepest part of you. Often looking at your surroundings for a prompt will get you writing when you think you have nothing to write. Open your journal and look at your surroundings. Pick an object, like a window or chair, and write about how it relates to your loss. If you can’t make the object a metaphor for loss or healing, try deliberately writing about something unrelated to the loss, like an ice cream cone you had or a sound you heard in the street that day. Somewhere in there a kernel of your emotions will shine through and contribute to your healing.
Laugh, Laugh, and Then Laugh Again
Go see a comedy movie. Go see a stand-up comedian at your local comedy club. If you want to make the experience even better, take a lot of friends or family. Organize it yourself, and ask as many people as you can to attend. You are not only going to end up attending an uplifting event, but you are also going to be performing positive actions, like phone calls or e-mails encouraging people to join you.
These suggestions are just the beginning of all the things you can do for yourself. And remember that your healing won’t come overnight. Do whatever you can do to help yourself stop the downward spirals. Healing will take some time and nurturing.
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