Five tips for managing grief and loss
Our counsellor Michele describes how grief and loss can affect you and gives advice on managing and on seeking help.
Grief can be an incredibly difficult process. It’s something we’re all likely to experience at some point in our lives for a range of reasons. You may be grieving following a bereavement but also the loss or change of a relationship, or loss of health due to illness.
Grief is a natural response to losing someone you knew. It can affect you emotionally, mentally and physically.
You may be feeling shock and disbelief, sadness, depression, worry, overwhelmed, fearful, angry, abandonment, relief – or guilt. Equally you may experience a range of these feelings, or feel nothing at all.
Sometimes grief may be delayed and strong emotions may come up when you least expect them to or be hard to separate from other emotional difficulties you may already have.
Your feelings may be shaped by your cultural background or beliefs and by your individual relationship to that person, which may be different to your family or friends.
Grief is also a process but it doesn’t have a set timeline. Here are our tips and advice for managing:
1. Accept your feelings
However you feel is valid – there is no right or wrong way to feel and how we respond is individual. It’s OK to cry, and it’s OK not to as well.
2. Give yourself time
It takes time to mourn. Be patient with yourself and give yourself permission and time to feel the way you feel
3. Celebrate good memories
Finding a way to celebrate the memory of the person you have lost can be helpful for some, but not all, depending on your relationship to the person you have lost and if those memories are positive.
4. Keep up your routines
Looking after yourself is important. Prioritise eating and sleeping well to support your mental health and wellbeing.
5. Express how you feel
Talk to someone you trust about how you feel. This could be a friend or family member or a grief counsellor if you'd rather speak to someone you don't know or who can give more professional advice.
If your feelings are not gradually becoming more manageable over time and are starting to affect your day-to-day life, perhaps stopping you from doing things you’d like to do, or causing you too much distress months after the loss, Talking Therapies can help you work through those feelings and regain more of a sense of balance.
If you'd like to talk to us about getting support for more complicated grief and loss, give our team a call on 0300 365 2000 or complete our online referral form.