Tips For Dealing With Grief-Related Stress
Grief is something that everyone experiences at some point in his or her life. Grieving over the death of a spouse, friend, or family member exposes people to many months of constant stress that can lead to anxiety, …When we lose someone very close to us, it can leave us feeling lost, isolated, and alone. In many cases, we are left with greater pressure due to the added responsibilities that we are left with and at the same time, we are forced to consider our very human mortality.
This can leave us shaken and overwhelmed. Fortunately, though there are some things that we can do to help ourselves deal with the stress that we experience as the result of our grief.
A Shoulder To Lean On
When we are dealing with grief, we have to understand that it is a process. The loss of something that we have been very attached to will leave a gap or wound in our minds that need time to heal. If we understand that the mind needs time to recover from the loss that it has experienced we can have greater patience and understanding for ourselves as we go through the grieving process.
This is a time when friends and family become very important and we absolutely should not be afraid to ask for help. Having other people around us serves as a reminder that we are not alone and that perhaps it is not just ourselves who are grieving.
By allowing other people to help out with anything that they are able, we can help to alleviate some of the stress that has fallen upon our shoulders.
Life has many ups and downs. There are many people, situations, and material things in our life that will come and go. Having a mindset that takes into account the fragile nature of life and of life’s inherent impermanence will help us to work through grief when it arises. This does not mean that we do not experience any grief at all; it just means that we are better able to work through it when it does arise.
A very important thing to note regarding grief is what Buddhists call the nature of attachment. The greater attachment we have to things, the greater amount of grief we experience when that thing is gone. This goes just the same for people as material possessions and it is something that Buddha tried to help people understand.
As hard as it can be sometimes to remain detached, we can know that by not developing too much attachment we can save ourselves from the inevitable trauma that will take place in our minds when something is taken from our life.
Compassion And Understanding
We must take into account that grieving is a process and we must also understand that while we are experiencing grief we are in a very fragile state where even the smallest things can seem unobtainable or crushing. If we do our best to limit, the amount of pressure we feel and if we can develop some compassion for ourselves at this time in our life, we can really give our minds and ourselves the space that it needs to overcome the grief.
Having compassion for ourselves means that we don’t expect too much from ourselves, we allow ourselves to take it easy and don’t get involved with heavy workloads or high expectations.
It’s very important at this time, while we are experiencing the added stresses of grief, that we carefully consider what we can and can’t do and be honest with ourselves and with the people around us when things begin to get too much for us to handle.
A Personal Account
I have personally known the grief that comes with the loss of a loved one and I know the feeling of complete helplessness that comes with it. At this time in my life, I felt that everything was unfair and that even the smallest requests of people were just too much to handle.
I needed time to be alone to let myself grieve. I didn’t know it at the time but this grief was something physical that needed to occur within me. I had lost someone very close to me and I needed to come to terms with that in my mind. It took days of me crying and reflecting on what had happened until I felt like all the tears had been exhausted and finally a resolution came over me, I had witnessed an essential and important lesson in life firsthand, this being that eventually everything is taken from us and we lose it all.
From that day on, I was better able to understand that all of the things and people in my life were only temporary and that eventually, the loss would always replace them. This meant that I was better able to enjoy the time that I had with people knowing that I would one day losing them and so not feeling fearful of this fact. Why fear something that was inevitable anyway?
So it took me about a week to come terms with this, after working through all of the confusion and sadness at this loss, but eventually, I emerged through the other side with a clearer understanding of what I was going through.
The Most Important Thing
To summarize this article, at this time of grief in your life, the last thing you need is added stress. Grief is heavy enough and you don’t need to be putting any extra pressure on yourself by living up to other peoples or even your own demands.
Allow yourself to grieve, give your mind time, and space to work through what it needs to. Ask others for help when you need it, your loved ones and friends are there for you and in most cases, you just need to be honest with them and let them know that you’re not ready for the added work or that you need help from them in some way.
Grief touches us all at some point so be patient with yourself and understand that you are going through a process. In time, everything will settle and you will emerge ready to tackle the world head-on once more.