Losing a loved one can make you feel a mix of emotions — sad, angry, confused, and stressed are just a few. Coping with all of these emotions, getting everything in order, and returning back to your “normal” life can take a huge toll on your mental health.
The journey through grief isn’t an easy one, but if you remember to take care of yourself, you’ll be better off in the end. Since May is Mental Health Month, we are sharing ways you can take care of your mental health after experiencing the death of a loved one.
Find Someone to Talk to
Though family and friends are a huge part of your support system, it may be beneficial to also seek professional support. Take care of your mental health and emotional wellbeing by regularly meeting with a qualified grief counselor. They can help you assess your feelings, find coping strategies, and just be someone you can count on.
Do What Brings You Joy
When grieving, it can be hard to find the joy in life. You may be too sad or tired to really do anything. At least once a day, make the effort to do something that brings you joy. Maybe it’s watching that comedy movie you’ve seen 20 times, or it could be as simple as indulging in a dessert. It’s so important to give your mind a break from the grief to do something joyful.
Find Time to Exercise
Between planning the funeral, getting caught up on work, and managing your family, you may feel physically and mentally drained. However, working out is the best way to boost your energy and mood. In fact, one study found that exercise can make you feel happier and lower feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress.
So, even a 20-minute cardio walk or a short bike ride can get those endorphins flowing. Maybe you will find it’s a form of meditation for you.
Let It All Out
When you bottle up your emotions and keep everything inside, it can soon become too much. It’s okay to let it all out and cry when you’re feeling sad. In fact, crying helps you feel calm and enhances your mood afterward. It has also been found that crying relieves stress, releases endorphins, and lets those around you know you need support.
Take a Personal Day
After a loss, life doesn’t simply go back to normal. That’s why it’s important to let your work know what’s going on. They may have certain policies for bereavement that are beneficial for you.
Even months after the death, you may feel like a full day of work is too much. If you’re able, take the day off to mentally recoup — this way you won’t become overwhelmed or experience burnout.
What are some ways you take care of your mental health? Share by commenting below!