How to Care for Yourself While Grieving The loss of someone or something important to you is among life’s greatest challenges. In most cases, the pain can be devastating. You may go through all kinds of complicated and unexpected emotions, ranging from shock to very deep sadness. The experience can also damage your physical health, making it a struggle to think straight or to even eat or sleep. Of course, these are all normal reactions. But though there are no right or wrong ways to grieve, there is an approach that helps make everything easier. Self-care
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Grieving is just one more big reason you have to take care of yourself. The stress brought on by this experience can readily use up your emotional and physical strength. That’s why you have to look after your physical and emotional needs while going through this challenging period.
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Acceptance You can try to hold back your grief, but you do that forever. Facing your pain is crucial to healing. Shunning your feelings of sadness and loss only extends the grieving process. Unresolved grief can also cause complications like depression, substance abuse, and health issues. Tangible or Creative Expression Expressing your grief in some tangible or creative way helps in processing your grief. For instance, write about it in your journal. If you lost a loved one, write a letter saying all that you wanted to say but never got to; create a scrapbook or photo album of the person’s life; or join a cause or organization that your loved one was part of. Physical Health Take note that the mind and body are connected. When you are physically healthy, you will be able to process your emotions better. You can fight stress and fatigue by sleeping, eating and exercising right. Avoid alcohol and drugs, which tend to numb your or lift your mood superficially. Hobbies and Interests There’s comfort in going back to your old routine, doing all the things you used to do and enjoying them again. The more you connect with other people, the less the pain becomes. However, don’t let them force you into feeling this or that, and don’t force yourself either. Your grief is a being on its own, and no one can tell you when you need to move on or let go. Don’t be scared of being embarrassed or judged by own feelings. It’s okay to cry, not to cry, be angry or even to laugh and find little moments of joy. Preparation As you try to resolve your grief and pain, prepare for “triggers,” like anniversaries, holidays and other events that can cause memories and feelings to come flooding back. Most importantly, know that this is all normal. Again, face the pain and deal with it, but not without expressing it, whether verbally or otherwise.