Despite common knowledge about the “stages of grief,” grieving is not necessarily a linear process. Emotions can be processed only to resurface again months or years later, certain anniversaries and milestones may trigger long-term emotional responses, and the entire process is different for each individual. For people who are dealing with grief or have a loved one who is grieving, there are a few important things to consider:
Sometimes people get so wrapped up in a situation they do not take the time to acknowledge grief and loss. It may feel easier to get distracted by the routine of life and forget to take time to mourn. Instead of avoiding, denying, burying, or escaping from these emotions, try to acknowledge the feelings as they arise and allow yourself to experience the full range of emotions in the aftermath of loss.
Finding People to Lean On
Dealing with grief is easier with the help of loved ones. Family and friends can lend a sympathetic ear, grieve together, or even step in to help with basic day-to-day needs. Finding support from loved ones or speaking with a mental health professional can help in working through difficult emotions during the grieving process.
The mind and body are connected, and taking care of physical health will make a positive impact on emotional health. Eating right, getting enough sleep, and maintaining regular exercise are all important during the grieving process. It also helps to breathe deeply, connect with nature, listen to music and continue to enjoy whatever hobbies and activities are most fulfilling.
Seeking Professional Help
Grief can feel extremely intense and complicated, especially if there is any trauma involved. If the loss was sudden and unexpected, or upsetting emotions, memories and anxieties do not seem to pass, seeking professional support may help in managing complicated emotions, making healing changes, and learning healthy ways to cope in the grieving process.
ACI’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is here to offer confidential, professional mental health support and covers to employees and all family members. Contact ACI anytime at 800.932.0034 or firstname.lastname@example.org.