Mental health

Healing Through Loss: 8 Healthier Ways to Process Grief!

Recently, I experienced the devastating loss of my mother due to a serious accident. Losing her shattered my world; she wasn’t just my mom; she was my best friend and the closest person to me. The grief felt insurmountable, like a weight I couldn’t lift. But amidst the pain, I have been striving to find healthier ways to cope with this profound loss.

What is grief? What are stages of grief? And How I am trying to cope my grief in heathier way? Read on to know more.

What is Grief?

Grief is a natural response to loss, whether it’s the death of a loved one, the end of a relationship, or another significant change. It’s a complex emotional process that can manifest in various ways, including sadness, anger, guilt, and even physical symptoms like fatigue or headaches.

Stages of Grief

Though everyone experiences grief differently, there are commonly recognized stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. These stages aren’t necessarily linear, and individuals may cycle through them multiple times before finding a sense of peace.

  • Denial: In the initial stage of grief, it is common to feel a sense of disbelief or denial. It’s difficult to accept the reality of the loss, and there may be a tendency to reject or minimize the situation as a defense mechanism.
  • Anger: As the reality of the loss sinks in, feelings of anger and frustration may arise. This anger can be directed towards oneself, others, or even towards the person who has passed away. It’s a natural reaction to the pain and sense of injustice associated with the loss.
  • Bargaining: In this stage, there is a desire to regain control or reverse the loss through negotiation or bargaining. It’s common to make promises to a higher power or to oneself in an attempt to change the outcome. This stage is characterized by a sense of longing and a search for meaning or understanding.
  • Depression: As the full weight of the loss becomes apparent, feelings of sadness, despair, and emptiness may set in. It’s normal to experience profound sadness and a sense of hopelessness during this stage. Depression in grief is not the same as clinical depression but is a natural response to profound loss.
  • Acceptance: In the final stage of grief, there is a gradual acceptance of the reality of the loss. While the pain may never fully disappear, there is a sense of peace and resolution that comes with acknowledging the loss and integrating it into one’s life. Acceptance doesn’t mean forgetting or moving on, but rather finding a way to live with the loss and honor the memory of the person who has passed away

Strategies to Cope with grief in a healthier way

Avoiding Being Alone

As a first step, I am trying to avowing being alone.  Surrounding myself with supportive friends and family has been crucial. Their presence provides comfort and reminds me that I am not alone in this journey. Whether it’s sharing stories or simply sitting in silence, being around loved ones helps alleviate the loneliness and isolation that often accompany grief.

Increasing Physical Movement

As next step, I am focusing on increasing physical moment. Engaging in physical activities like walking or cycling release tension and help in coping negative emotions in healthier way.  Exercise has proven to be a powerful tool in managing grief, as it releases endorphins that act as natural mood lifters. I am going on frequent nature walks to get a much-needed break from the heaviness of grief.

Talking to Friends

Opening up about my feelings with trusted friends has been immensely therapeutic. Sharing memories of my mom and talking through my emotions helps me process the grief in a healthy way. Friends offer a listening ear, empathy, and validation, which are invaluable in navigating the complexities of grief.

Talking to Her Like I Used To

As next step, I keep Continuing to talk to my mom, even though she’s no longer physically here, brings me a sense of closeness and connection. It’s as if she’s still a part of my life, guiding me through this difficult time. Whether it’s sharing updates about my day or seeking her advice in moments of uncertainty, talking to her helps keep her memory alive and provides a source of comfort.

Writing and Journaling

Next, I am putting my thoughts and feelings onto paper allows me to express myself freely and without judgment. Journaling serves as an outlet for my emotions and helps me make sense of the chaos within. Whether it’s writing letters to my mom, jotting down memories, or simply venting my frustrations, writing provides a sense of catharsis and clarity amidst the turmoil of grief.

Keeping Myself Busy

As next step, I am trying to keep myself busy to distracts me from dwelling on the pain of loss. Whether it is pursuing hobbies or focusing on work, staying busy gives me a sense of purpose and fulfillment. Engaging in meaningful activities not only helps pass the time but also provides a much-needed respite from the intensity of grief.

Spending Time in Nature

Next, Immersing myself in the beauty of nature brings a sense of peace and solace. Being outdoors helps me feel connected to something larger than myself and provides a welcome respite from the heaviness of grief.

Remembering Good Times Together

Last but not the least, I am reflecting on the happy memories I shared with my mom to brings a bittersweet comfort. Celebrating her life rather than solely mourning her death allows me to cherish the moments we had together. Whether it’s looking through old photo albums or sharing anecdotes with loved ones, remembering the joy and laughter we shared helps keep her spirit alive in my heart.

Conclusion

Coping with grief is a deeply personal journey, and there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. While the pain of loss may never fully subside, finding healthier ways to cope can help ease the burden and pave the way toward healing. By surrounding myself with support, engaging in self-care practices, and honoring my mom’s memory, I am slowly navigating through the stages of grief and finding moments of peace amidst the storm. Each day brings its challenges, but with love, patience, and resilience, I am learning to embrace the light even in the darkest of times.

read also: https://surbhiprapanna.com/2023/08/23/8-effective-ways-to-stop-overthinking/

18 Comments

  • Harjeet Kaur

    It is heartening to see you are handling your grief well. Acceptance, as you said, is the first step. It is not easy, but we have to move on. The world doesn’t stop for anyone, sadly. I am still coping and as you said, it is very personal. No one can understand your grief.

  • Alpana Deo

    It is good to see you resuming writing. Noone can fill the vacuum but we can try. Life keep on moving and we have to gather courage and stand up. Time is the best healer. Her values, words, memories will always stay with you. Stay strong!!

  • Preeti Chauhan

    My condolences Surbhi! Losing a parent is shattering and nothing seems to help cope with the loss. I did all the things that you said but the pain only became bearable with time. The best way to remember them is by following their teachings.Stay strong, tight hugs to you!

  • Cindy DSilva

    Oh gosh tight hugs to you dear. It’s not easy to lose a parent and I was in denial for quite some time. But I was 12 and got over it after many years. Agree that Acceptance is key to many things related to mental wellness.

  • Imagemakeover

    A virtual hug to you Surbhi. I totally agree this is very personal and no one can ever understand your pain but I am sure writing about this itself must be cathartic. All your suggestions are bang on. More power to you dear.

  • Shilpa Garg

    Sorry about your loss. Surbhi. Your strength through such a tough time is inspiring. You’re bravely moving forward, your courage shines brightly, keep it going… more power and strength to you!

  • Ruchi Verma

    I can totally understand the kind of pain you are going through because I am sailing on the same boat. It’s not easy to stay strong at this point and I totally relate to you but life goes on and you have to get up smile and move on. Stay strong

  • Tina Basu

    Please accept my condolences. It is a hard time and it is such a thing that nothing can really fill up for the loss. It is the most difficult time for anyone dealing with such a loss. Big hug, stay strong, you will overcome eventually because time will heal.

  • Sandy N Vyjay

    Loss of a near and dear one is something that we all face and it is quite a journey, coming to terms with the loss and the accompanying grief. The stages are indeed painful, but we need to move on keeping in our minds and hearts the sweet memories of the person, alive forever,

  • Kavita Singh

    Hugs, I do not even know the right words at this moment. The loss of a parent is like a scar in our soul and we learn to live with this pain 🙂

  • Gleefulblogger

    The loss of a parent is devastating, and often, nothing seems to alleviate the sorrow. Despite trying everything suggested, it’s only with time that the pain becomes manageable. Honoring their memory by living their teachings is the best tribute. Stay strong, sending you tight hugs.

  • Kavita Singh

    Each individual deals with grief differently and it is an ongoing process. I am sure these pointers are going to help many sailing in the similar boats 🙂 Hugs, Surbhi.

  • Anjali Tripathi Upadhyay

    I’m happy to see you writing again. You are right as you said, accepting the situation is the first step. It’s hard, but we have to keep moving forward. It’s tough that the world doesn’t stop for us, no matter what we’re going through.

  • MeenalSonal

    More power to you Surbhi! It is very hard to accept things in life, but it is also true that our loved ones always stay close to our heart guiding us, giving us strength to keep moving in life.

  • Rahul Prabhakar

    Thank you so much, Surbhi, for sharing your latest blog post, ‘Healing Through Loss: 8 Healthier Ways to Process Grief!’ It’s such an important topic, and your insights are incredibly valuable. Losing a loved one can change you forever, but grief doesn’t have to be the end of your relationship with them. Grief can trigger new beginnings and push you to adapt and change. Your compassionate approach and practical suggestions make a real difference to anyone navigating through grief. Keep up the fantastic work!

  • romagptasinha

    Ohh this breaks my heart surbhi, i was not aware, i only know that you wrote in our book that talking to your mom every day gave you all the strength. Please accept my heartfelt condolences love and take care of yourself, your article on handling grief is so worthy.

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