Loss comes in several forms. Losing a loved one, a pet, or even an opportunity can have a devastating impact on your livelihood. Loss sucks away at your energy, allowing you only enough brain power to focus on your misfortune and nothing else. If you’ve been through a tough loss recently, there are ways to get through to the other side. Of course, if you are dealing with serious symptoms, the first step is to see a counselor. Otherwise, here are ways to understand and confront your loss.
How to Deal with Loss
The first step to recovery is making sure your body is taken care of; grief can take over your entire life, consuming your thoughts until there is no room for anything else, even your physical health. No matter how difficult your situation, it is important to make sure you are fed, bathed, and well-rested. If you can’t function, the easiest thing to do is take a shower.
A study from the health journal Gerontologist revealed that victims of grief suffered far worse symptoms of depression if they were in worse physical and hygiene health than their peers. In other words, taking care of yourself may not heal you, but it will put you in a far better space than before.
When you let feelings fester inside your head, without giving them a pathway for release, it is difficult to allow room for healing. All people express their feelings differently, but the common ground is that all people must let their feelings out, one way or another. Consider your method for release, whether that is through venting to loved ones, exercising, or even creative outlets, and try to turn to that method during times of stress.
Research has shown that people who dealt with grief by turning towards creative outlets, like journaling and artwork, and tuning in to their experience were able to better confront their depression. Becoming attuned to your trauma will allow you to further understand the best path to recovery.
Finding a Friend
While opening up to people can be difficult, it’s generally extremely helpful to create a connection and let your thoughts out. The avenue created does not have to be with another human. While family and friends can be extremely helpful, there are other ways to vent without fear of judgment. Journaling, for example, is a great way to get your feelings out in front, making them much easier to decipher and tackle.
If journaling is not for you, consider a pet! Soft loving eyes, even if they are not from a human, can give you a ton of relief. You can find a pet at a shelter or online no matter where you live, whether it’s Texas cats in a shelter, New York hamsters from a pet shop, or Florida Puppies Online.
Find another living or inanimate source to give your effort and love to, and you’ll find the burden of losing the other source lessened.
Finally, the most important step in the grief process is allowing yourself to simply feel. Understand that grief is a natural part of your situation, and accepting that sadness will accompany grief will get you one step closer to healing. Loss is not an easy thing to get through and remembering that you always have options, whether that is taking care of yourself, looking for help, or simply allowing yourself an avenue for release, can open the heart to moving past trauma and into the future.