supporting grief through self care
With the loss of a loved one, comes grief. Grief is a natural process that we all must face at one time or another in our lives. As individuals we do not experience loss and grief in the same way. When you really stop to think about it, grief affects more than just your emotions and mental health. Grief affects your entire being; heart, mind, body and soul. Those observing you will notice this, but as the person grieving, you may not consciously notice the major toll grief is taking on yourself. The truth is, grief does affect every part of us, physically, mentally and emotionally. Recognize these impacts so that you can adjust your life accordingly and be gentle with yourself during this difficult time.
Recognizing that good self-care is essential to your survival. To practice good self-care doesn’t mean you are feeling sorry for yourself, or being self-indulgent; rather, it means you are creating conditions that allow you to integrate the death of someone loved into your heart and soul.
Self-care strengthens your long and challenging grief journey, a journey which leaves you profoundly affected and deeply changed. To be self-nurturing is to have the courage to pay attention to your needs. Above all, self-nurturing is about self-acceptance. When we recognize that self-care begins with ourselves, we no longer think of those around us as being totally responsible for our well-being. Healthy self-care forces us to mourn in ways that help us heal, and that is nurturing indeed.
Muscle aches and pains, shortness of breath, feelings of emptiness in your stomach, tightness in your throat or chest, digestive problems, sensitivity to noise, heart palpitations, queasiness, nausea, headaches, increased allergic reactions, changes in appetite, weight loss or gain, agitation, and generalized tension—these are all ways your body may react to the loss of someone loved.
Good self-care is important at this time. Your body needs you to listen to it and requires that you honor it and treat it with respect. The quality of your life ahead depends on how you take care of your body today. The lethargy of grief you are probably experiencing is a natural mechanism intended to slow you down and encourage you to care for your body.
Self care is any and all activities that nurture you and provide you with a sense of well-being. This can range from eating whole healthy foods at this time, to going for a walk with a family pet, to sitting quietly and meditating, or having a massage session. Self care is the things you do to take care of yourself so that you may thrive. So work in your garden, talk to a counselor, move your body gentle with yoga, have energy work done on you like Reiki. Do what is necessary to help you heal as you move and work through your grief.
As a Natural Health Therapist and owner of Nourish the Soul Wellness Centre, the focus at our Centre is to encourage self care to individuals helping them on their healing journey. We believe that self care honors you to live a life of fulfillment and purpose. At Nourish the Soul our team of Certified Holistic Practitioners can support you through all phases of life’s experience, honoring the Mind, Body & Soul wherever you may be.
Natural Health Therapist
Nourish the Soul Wellness Centre
Michele will be on site at our Grief Support Open House on Friday, April 20th from 10am to 5pm to share more information about the services that Nourish the Soul Wellness Centre offers.