Grief is a natural emotion. A reaction to losing something or someone. Grief hurts. But even more, grief is something we all share in our core.
We don’t like to lose things. People. Even lifestyles. Whatever we lose, it hurts. The emotions come strong. They impact all parts of our relationships and lives. But there’s a silver lining in all this. You have to realize that grief is a normal part of life. Not a disease. Or disorder. Just because you’re struggling, doesn’t mean you have done something bad. Or that you’re in the midst of something negative.
What is Grief?
Grief shows you that you cared. That you loved something strong enough that the pain from it hits hard. For some of us, grief comes in spikes. Every day. Every night. For others, it’s a completely different story. They pass hard through different stages of grief. For some, grief is like the sea.
It drowns and carries them in waves brimming with powerful emotions. Even more, the last of us feel grief like it’s a stone. A weight they carry on their shoulders or heart. Wherever they are.
The point is this — We all feel grief differently. We don’t experience grief the same. Both as an emotion and a process in time. How you experience grief will likely be way different than anything you saw on TV.
Grief From Losing Loved One
Don’t be fooled. Losing someone you love will be one of the hardest life challenges. But grief from losing someone or something doesn’t only apply to this hard case. Intense grief from losing loved things comes in all shapes and sizes. You can lose:
- Financial stability
- Loved dream
- Feeling safe
- Family home
- Where you live
Even small losses can make you experience strong grief. For instance, people grieve from leaving their family. Or from college graduation. From a job change. Even from moving up the corporate ladder.
It’s not about what you lose. It’s about how meaningful something was to you. Some people welcome job changes. Some are terrified of it. If it’s personal, don’t be ashamed. It’s perfectly normal to feel or believe something was crucial in your life. It’s normal that you grieve for some things.
Whether we’re talking about a spouse, parent, partner, child, or close friend, nothing hurts more than losing a loved one. When this happens, your life will likely never be the same. However, as time passes, you’ll learn to cope with your loss. Live with your sorrow. Even see something positive in the future. This brings us to our next lesson.
Healthy And Unhealthy Ways of Coping With Grief
But however strong you feel grief, you can cope with this in a healthy way and not so healthy way. Unhealthy ways include suffocating and ignoring your feelings. Drinking alcohol or using drugs to forget. Staying in yourself and not communicating with your loved ones.
Healthy ways of coping include exercise and sleeping normally as much as you can. It’s also perfectly normal to visit an expert or a therapist. They’ll talk with you and help you process grief in a healthy manner.
Remember this. However you feel, you have to process and express those emotions. Suffocating emotions deteriorates your mental health. And makes you lose unnecessary energy all so you can pretend nothing happened. You’ll find new meaning eventually. And go on with your life. However, you can.
How a Grief Process Looks Like
Every grieving process is a unique experience. As we said, everyone feels grief in another way. There are no wrong or right ways to experience grief. Except using drugs or alcohol. How someone feels their grief is based on various factors. Primarily, how they learned to cope with grief in their family. Then, their life experience, personality, and how important was the loss for them. Your faith also determines how you grieve.
Ultimately, the grief process will last for a while. Every healing process is gradual. You can’t force it. You can’t hurry it. There is no normal time period to grieve in. Some will begin to feel better after weeks. Some take months. Some, years. The important caveat is that you take your time. Have patience. Let the process happen on its own.
The pain won’t go away if you don’t deal with it. If you try to suffocate it or stop it from surfacing, you’ll only make everything worse in the long game. True healing begins when you face your grief. When you deal with it in an active way.
Don’t put on a stone mask. Pretend you don’t feel anything from loss. If you feel sad, then feel sad. If you feel scared, then feel scared. Crying doesn’t equal being weak. You aren’t protecting anyone by using a strong front. You have to show how you truly feel. Especially to your loved ones.
On crying, if you aren’t crying, that doesn’t mean anything bad. Crying is a normal process for dealing with grief. But not the only one in existence. Even if you don’t cry, that doesn’t mean you aren’t feeling intense emotions. You may just have other ways to show it.