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Dealing With Grief: Healthy Strategies for Long-Term Healing
Losing someone is one of the most challenging life experiences out there. But research by the American Psychological Association shows that most people recover from loss if they have healthy habits and social support aiding them in the process. If you’ve been looking for healing in these difficult times, just know that you alone can contribute to your long-term health. Here, Bridges to Empowerment demonstrates how.
Comfort in Others
One of the biggest mistakes you can make when dealing with grief is sequestering yourself. Yes, we understand the instinct to shut yourself off from the world and build fences. However, it is vital to put yourself out of your comfort zone and reach out to others in times of difficulty. There is something nurturing and comforting in talking out your emotions to loved ones. In addition, maintaining your social contacts is one of the most critical factors influencing life fulfillment and happiness levels, so it’s well worth it.
Work Out Those Emotions
Exercising is a simple enough habit, but it packs a significant punch. In addition to boosting your longevity and maintaining your overall functioning, working out is also an effective tool in navigating periods of difficulty. The exercise task gives you something to focus on instead of ruminating on the past. In addition, it helps release ‘happy hormones,’ which promote feelings of adrenaline and serotonin to leave you feeling your best.
Take Care of a Furry Friend
A study by HABRI revealed that 97% of patients showed improved mental health after interacting with animals. You can’t help but smile when you see a grumpy cat or cute dog, and these emotions help relieve stress and lift our mood. Animal companionship has calming effects on us and keeps our bodies and minds healthy. In addition, the act of being responsible for a living thing increases our sense of purpose. This can help offset the depression or loneliness you may feel after losing a loved one.
According to an article by NBC, Americans are the unhappiest they’ve been in 50 years. The study reports that a significant reason for this statistic is that individuals remain unfulfilled in their careers. Thus, to boost your happiness, you need to find rewarding and meaningful work that induces passion. If you’re stumped for ideas, look to your hobbies. If you enjoy crafting, management, pet sitting – whatever it is – pursue it. Life is too short not to work towards a fulfilling career! From there, you can build a monetizable business. Be sure to form an LLC for your new business, too, as this will afford you limited liability, tax benefits, and reduced paperwork. Next, do some research on how LLC’s operate in your area, as the regulations can differ from state to state.
Embrace Your Emotions
Our last tip is to embrace your emotions for all they are. Grief is a particularly tumultuous life experience, and you will have waves of negative feelings. The best thing you can do for your mental health is register those feelings, embrace them, and not overthink them. It isn’t weak or abnormal to feel these feelings, nor is it a matter of shame. Instead, these feelings will come and go with time. Mindful activities like meditation and journaling can help you process your emotions faster, which can aid the process of healing and recovery.
There isn’t a shortcut through grief and the confusing emotions of loss. Getting through the other side can seem like an upward battle, but healthy strategies along the way help you get to the finish line faster. Habits create a routine that keeps you occupied and focused on the future rather than the past. So be sure to try some of these healing strategies – we promise you’ll feel better.
Experiencing a rough life patch? Bridges to Empowerment offers learning tools to increase well-being and reduce stress. Be sure to check out our classes, events, and mentoring for a happier, more empowered you.
Authored by Camille Johnson
Camille Johnson created Bereaver.com after she went through the ups and downs of the
bereavement process following the loss of her parents and husband. With the help of her friend
who was experiencing a loss of her own, she learned how to grieve the healthy way. This made
her realize that there is no one way to grieve, but it is important to do it in a way that supports your physical and mental health.