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How to cope with grief

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Published 07/07/2020
Grief is a natural emotion when you lose a loved one and affects people in different ways. The initial stages can leave you feeling helpless, angry and sad. You must allow yourself the time to grieve and be sad, there isn't a correct way to grieve and some people will take longer to recover than others. You are likely to have intense emotions for a prolonged period of time when the grief is at the forefront of your mind. It is important to remember that these feelings will not last forever and there are steps you can take to help the grieving process.

These include:
  • Expressing your emotions.
It can be difficult to express yourself when you are struggling to make sense of your emotions. Finding someone you feel comfortable speaking to can help with the grieving process, this could be a friend, family member, your GP or a counsellor. If you aren't comfortable talking you could write about your feelings of loss in a diary, this will also help you to reflect on how far you have come.
  • Keeping up a routine.
Having a routine to stick to can help to focus on your recovery, this could be something as simple as going for a daily walk, keeping up with a hobby or taking your dog for a walk.
  • Looking after your health.
Your mind and body are connected so exercise and a healthy diet will help your overall wellbeing. Try to get enough sleep as emotional strain can make you very tired. It is important to find a way that works for you without resorting to a temporary fix such as alcohol which will not help your recovery in the long run.
  • Seeking Professional help
If you feel like you aren't coping you can speak with your GP, it's important to remember that you are not on your own and support is available.
  • Acceptance.
The final stage of the grieving process is acceptance. Coming to terms with the reality of your loss and how it can't be changed allows you to be able to start moving forward with your life. It is normal to still feel sad and certain days may be harder than others, but you should start to feel some normality return to your day to day life.