Grieving is a challenging journey to endure after losing a loved one. It is natural to become overwhelmed as you go through the stages of grieving (denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance). However, bereavement counsellor and therapist Stuart MacFarlane has some helpful tips to comfort you through this difficult and trying time.
Seek & accept support
Enduring the pain associated with the loss of a loved one should not be something you take on alone. You need to have support and care from others around you, like friends, family members or professional bereavement counsellors. Whether they offer a shoulder to cry on, a sympathetic ear, or give you emotional support, help from others will benefit you.
In dealing with the loss of a loved one, it is important to allow the sorrow associated with the grief to be able to move on towards healing. Hiding it, pushing it away or running from grief are natural too, but in themselves won’t make things better.
Learn about grief
As you educate yourself on grieving and can dismiss the myths around it, you’ll realize that grieving is a normal part of life. Along the way, you may wind up discovering early warning signs that your grief is more complex and that you may need more support to cope. Either way, knowledge is power and the more you know, the better and faster you’ll move towards healing.
Timing is key
Grieving can be physically and emotionally exhausting as intense feelings can drain a lot of energy. So give yourself plenty of time to do routine tasks and don’t overexert yourself. Set a slow pace because you want time to rest and heal between all your daily activities.
As you move through the phases of grieving, you may find yourself wanting to become involved in something at work or in another activity that you enjoy. This can help you focus on something else and offer a welcoming distraction from the pain associated with your grief. Sometimes people may feel guilty about taking time for themselves as if it is robbing the loved one of their attention. But its ok.
Have some fun
While grieving and bereavement isn’t a fun subject, some individuals don’t allow themselves to have any fun during the grieving process. However, everyone is familiar with that old adage laughter is the best medicine and that may as well be words to live by during this trying time. It never hurts to share a few fun and enjoyable moments with others to boost your mood.
Grieving over the loss of a loved one can take time to recover from but your intense feelings will subside as you move towards wholeness again. Keep the faith and remain resilient because there is a light at the end of the tunnel.