How to cope with loss

received_10105162298534247Each of us will face some sort of loss during our lifetime. Loss can include the passing away of a loved one, the loss of a job, divorce, decrease in mobility or body functions, and the loss of self after a life transition. There are many reactions to loss and each varies in severity based on coping skills, temperament, and social support.
Some ways to deal with grief are as follows:
Find a support group: This can be family, friends, or people at work or Church. It is helpful to have people that you can reach out to for guidance and a listening ear. Feeling alone and withdrawing from others can lead to depression. Find someone you trust to share your feelings with.
Express yourself : Artistic expression is a great way to cope. This can be done by drawing, journaling, and getting creative.
Spirituality: Meditating, deep breathing, paryer/fasting, and being in nature are ways you can feel more connected.
Keeping your routine: Make sure your sleep, excercise, and eating habits are in tact. Structure helps decrease chaos and stress. If you begin to slack off in one area it is easier to let the other areas of your life go.
Counseling: If you find yourself unable to cope more effectively 6 months after yoir loss it may be time to seek outside help. This can be a sign of what is called complicated grief. When left unchecked this can lead to substance abuse, major depression, and/or post traumatic stress. EMDR Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing therapy helps with trauma, PTSD, and depression.
Untreated complicated grief can lead to the use of negative coping skills such as drugs, alcohol, and self harming behaviors. You want to avoid things that “numb out pain”. Implement healthy coping skills early on when the loss first occurs. When proper coping skills are put to use loss becomes easier to manage.
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