From the Center for Grief Recovery
By Chris Rothman, Ph.D.
During grieving, it is common to need breaks from our emotions.
This in no way dishonors the seriousness of our concerns and the
memories of our loved one. These ideas may give you some additional
nourishment to respond to the stress that comes with grieving.
•Lie in the sun streaming in through your windows. Bathe, breathe
in the sun.
•Designate an afternoon or evening and take the phone off the
•When you are worried or obsessing, set up a specific time of the
day to "worry" for 20 minutes. Set a timer. When the time is up, do
something rewarding for yourself.
•Do something you're good at. It is important to ground yourself in
your skills and abilities, even if the outcome isn't up to par
(trouble concentrating and decreased zest are common in grief).
•Comfort yourself by taking a warm bath using your favorite scents,
and burn aromatherapy candles. It's invigorating and relaxing at
the same time.
•Buy yourself or your loved one a gift—and have the clerk gift wrap
it. Choose the prettiest paper and bow. Celebrate fond
•Wrap up in a warm blanket. Put on relaxation tapes and sip your
favorite tea or hot chocolate.
•Dressed in comfortable clothing, find a rocking chair and rock
your troubles away.
•Play music that matches your mood. Feel understood by the songs
and singers that share your experiences.
•Especially when you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed, forget
about making to-do lists. Instead, at the close of each day, make a
list of what's been done.
•Burn Russian amber or sandalwood incense.
•Find something alive to care for, such as a plant or a pet.
•Eat at least one nourishing meal each day, even if the food
doesn't hit your taste buds like you're used to.
•Make a fire in the fireplace and do some stretching and focus on
yourself. You can add your favorite soft music to this, if you
•Breathe—really breathe! Take deep breaths in through the nose and
slowly out through the mouth.
•Say "No" to something… and "Yes" to yourself.
•Try gentle exercise like yoga, tai chi, or walking.
•Spend some time in nature.
•Make a memory box, collage, or journal to store your thoughts and
Creatively Coping With Grief
What Helps When We’re Stumbling in the Dark
What Helps When We’re Experiencing the Unthinkable
Helping Children Through Grief
Also from the Center for Grief Recovery:
The Grief Experience
Grief in the Workplace: An Outline for Helping
Managing the Holidays
The Center for Grief Recovery is a full service, non-profit
nationwide Counseling Center helping persons who are dealing with
emotionally intense experiences such as Grief, Loss, Trauma,
Depression or Abuse. You can learn more at http://www.griefcounselor.org
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