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Coping with Grief

Coping with Grief

We experience grief for any loss that we have, whether that is a bereavement, a relationship break up or change of job. Grief is usually most powerful when we lose someone we love, and can be an extremely difficult and sad time.

Grieving involves a range of different feelings at different times. Each person deals with grief differently and there is no right or wrong way to grieve, although there may be some things that may help you.

Below is some general information about some of the ways that we may normally react or feel when we are grieving. Remember thought, we are all different, and you may not notice experiencing all of the symptoms described below.

Common feelings:

Sadness or depression






Common Thoughts

Why did this happen?

Why didn’t I go more/try and prevent it?

I feel like I'm going mad

I shouldn't be feeling this way

Common Behaviours

Not being able to sleep

Change in appetite

Becoming withdrawn, not wanting to socialise

Finding it hard to concentrate

Some ways you can look after yourself during your grief

Give yourself time to heal. Acknowledge that you are grieving and that the symptoms you are experiencing are normal.

It is important that you grieve for your loved one and allow yourself to feel the way you do, as this will allow you to express your feelings and move forward. Here are some suggestions that may help.

  • Don’t try to fight your feelings. Allow time for your thoughts and feelings, both positive and negative.

  • Talk to someone about how you are feeling. It can be hard to do this, especially if the bereavement happened some time ago, or you are worried about burdening people. If this is the case, you can contact a counsellor to talk to, who will listen to how you are feeling about it.

  • Don’t be afraid to cry. Crying is an important part of grief and will give you a release.

  • If you have to clear out the person’s home or finish off any business they left, this can be a difficult task and you may not want to do this at the moment. That is ok, or if you feel it needs taking care of, ask a relative or friend to support you.

  • Remember to take care of yourself. Eat well, get plenty of rest and get some exercise.

  • Writing down. Some people find that writing down how they are feeling can help them to express their grief. Writing down thoughts, feelings or memories about your loved one can all be factors in your grief that you wish to express.

  • Some people find it helps to go to a support group and talk to others who have lost people close to them.

  • Be patient. You won't feel better overnight, and it does take time. Some days will feel easier than others.

If you feel that your feelings are becoming overwhelming or that you are worried about hurting yourself, see your GP who will be able to recommend additional support that may be available to you.

Nicola Stait Counselling

Cheltenham, UK

©2017 by Nicola Stait Counselling.

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