Unfortunately, grief is a part of life. Whether it’s losing a loved one, experiencing a divorce or losing your job, grief is a painful process. You are going to experience a rollercoaster of emotions and experience what is commonly known as the five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. If you are experiencing grief, here are five tips to help you cope.
Don’t numb the pain
Grief is a painful emotion, so many people try to repress it. Try not to do this. It’s important that you allow yourself to feel sadness, anger and any other feelings that surface during the grieving process. These are all healthy emotions and important steps in the grieving process. Stay away from things that numb the pain, such as alcohol or drugs. This will only increase the pain when the numbness wears off.
While it may be hard, try to keep up your regular routines. Try to maintain your regular sleeping, eating and exercising pattern. Activities like walking the dog, going for runs or hiking can be very beneficial for your mental health while processing loss and grief.
Use your support networks
While your first instinct may be to pull away from others and isolate yourself, it’s important to stay connected during this difficult time. Draw on your support networks, such as friends, family and colleagues. Allow others to help you and remember you don’t need to do this alone.
While it’s important to give yourself time and heal yourself, after a while you may need someone to talk to. Talking about your feelings is a great way to heal. Expressing yourself to friends, family and mental health professionals will help you process your grief.
Don’t shy away from counselling
If it feels right, talk to a counsellor. Everyone’s different. You may be ready after a couple of weeks or it may be months. Only you will know. When you’re ready, visit a general practitioner and they can refer you to the right services.
Need help processing your grief? Make an appointment at Southport Metro Medical Centre on the Gold Coast. Our general practitioners will assess your mental health and connect you to a range of helpful support services.