Simple tips to help you cope

Struggling with Grief? Simple tips to help you cope

Grief is our natural reaction to loss. When we lose someone we love, or something that we are attached to, the reaction we may experience is known as grief.

While we can talk about the reactions many of us may experience when we face loss, it is a very personal and individual experience. But… reading or hearing about what others have found helpful in their grieving, can give you some ideas about what might be helpful for you.

Most importantly, we do know that there is no timetable on grief. You will do it in your own time.

Whatever your reaction, it is normal and common to have a wide range of often overwhelming feelings. It is important to look after yourself, give yourself time to acknowledge your feelings, and to seek support.

Simple tips to help your cope

  • Try not to avoid your feelings. Facing them and going through the feelings, crying, and talking to friends, family, your doctor and experienced counsellors, can provide relief and help your grief process.
  • Seek support from family and friends. While some people may not be able to give you the support you need, there are always those who can and will
  • Take time out from your regular routine such as your work; preferably as much time as you need
  • Cry when you feel the need. Crying or other ways of allowing yourself to feel your emotions is healing. Sometimes you may want to do this in private and at other times you may want to have someone with you
  • Return to your awareness of your breathing. Taking some deep breaths when you feel overwhelmed can be helpful
  • Make sure you are trying to eat and sleep regularly
  • Keep yourself hydrated with water or other non-alcoholic drinks. Alcohol is a depressant so it’s best to avoid it at times like this
  • Even though you may not feel like it initially, gentle exercise does help. A simple walk can help some of the physical reactions your body is going through. Walking around your garden, the block, the park, is a start. Find a friend to walk with you. Someone who is comfortable talking to you about your loss, the grief and the changes in your life
  • Consider joining a support group. Spending time with people who have had a similar experience may mean that they have some sense of what you are experiencing.

When Grief Gets Tough

We understand that the pain can feel extreme at times. The process of grieving is personal and there is no one model that everyone experiences.

You will grieve in your own time and your own way and you should allow that process to happen. It may feel like you are stuck in your grief at times, or that you keep falling back into how you felt when the death first happened. There will be days when the grief rolls over you like a wave and other days where it seems to recede.

There will be times when it feels as if life will never be the same again. In truth, it never will be the same as it was before. We don’t ‘get over’ grief, we grow around it.

The key thing is get support and to look after yourself. You do not need to struggle alone. The Grief Centre offers specialist reading material, counselling (onsite and by Skype) and support groups. Please call us today on (09) 418 1457 or email us if you or a friend needs help.

The Information on this page has been taken from our Resources Booklets, written by Dr Fiona Pienaar and is subject to copyright.
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