Self-Care Strategies for Dealing with Grief
The emotional strain that accompanies grief can lead to many physical consequences like overeating or the complete loss of appetite, anxiety and debilitating fatigue. Even on the best days, grief can sneak up on you with a vengeance. Managing the body’s response to grief and the fluctuations in mood, overwhelming feelings of emotions, disturbances in sleep or unexpected feelings of despair can seem like an insurmountable task. Each individual experiences and copes with grief in a unique way, but the benefit of self-care is universal to all circumstances.
Use these helpful strategies to navigate your journey with grief and healing.
Be patient. Accept that grief is a process that takes time and do yourself a favor by not comparing your circumstance to anyone else’s. Do not set timelines for healing and be flexible with your obligations.
Keep moving. Making an effort to fit in regular exercise can do wonders for the soul. Use movement and exercise as a tool to release hidden grief and become stronger, physically and emotionally.
Accept your feelings. Feelings are not right or wrong. Do not give them more credit than they deserve. Remember that emotions are fleeting and are often raw in the early stages of grief. Rather than attempting to stifle them, give yourself the permission to actually feel the feelings as they come.
Welcome the help of others. Grieving is a process and requires a significant amount of energy and attention. Lean on those closest to you. Be willing to accept help from others and ask for assistance in times of need.
Breathe full belly breaths. Grief often makes us want to curl up in a ball, resulting in shallow breaths that limit the amount of oxygen we take in. This can create fatigue and mental fog. Take a few moments to really breathe. Deep belly breaths fill our body with oxygen and release CO2 , helping to decrease stress and increase clarity.
Pamper your self. Comfort yourself with a warm bath, wrap your body in a warm blanket or sip your favorite tea. Be kind to yourself and take time to simply be.