When grief hits, it hurts. It is an invisible burden, and it likes to linger in the dark shadows of your mind. Talking about and expressing your grief can be helpful as you seek ways to work through this difficult situation. However, when you are an introvert, it can be much more difficult to let things out when you need to. But do not despair; there are ways to prioritize your mental and physical health so that you can work through your emotions and learn to live with the grief you feel.
The Human Connection
Even if you prefer to work through feelings on your own, it can help to know that there are other people who understand your inner turmoil. So, make plans to be with friends or family, enroll in a virtual support group, or visit a counselor to help you put into words what you are feeling. Sometimes, having another person to use as a springboard is the best way to get in touch with and consequently accept our emotions.
Eat for Your Health, Not Your Emotions
Eating is a universal way to feel better — or worse. Eating well is a vital part of healthy self-care. Routine and prioritizing nutritious meals is an excellent way to fuel your mind and body. Even if you are on a tight budget, you don’t have to sacrifice vitamins and minerals. Spend an afternoon going through what you have. You may find that you already have a closet full of staples, such as canned vegetables, whole-wheat pasta, and beans. You can use what you find in creative ways to make stews, sandwiches, and rice-based skillet dishes.
Look Good, Feel Good
There’s no denying that your outward appearance affects your confidence, and your self-esteem affects the way you carry yourself in public. Plan to do something nice for yourself that makes you look good on the outside so that you feel the same on the inside. Simple things, such as coloring your hair, trying new makeup, or putting on a pair of heels instead of sneakers, are an instant confidence boost for many women. For men, a trip to the barber, a button-up shirt, sportscoat, nice pants, and shoes.
Find Your Inner Peace
If looking good on the outside helps you feel good from the outside in, meditation can make you feel good from the inside out. To meditate, the Chopra Center first recommends choosing a mantra. This is simply a word or series of words that inspire you. When you’re grieving, you might chant to yourself, “I am strong.” Once you have your mental focal point, you’ll need to designate a place in your home where you are comfortable, can focus on your breathing, and hear the words flowing from your brain through your lips.
Enjoy the Water
If you’ve never been one to take baths, now is the perfect time to get started. Being in a warm bath can help release muscle tension and may even help ease digestive problems, which are common during times of grief and stress.
Exercise Is Achievable
When you are in the midst of grief, there are days when you do not want to get out of bed. However, lying around fixating on what you’ve lost may not be helpful. Running, jogging, walking, swimming, and hiking are excellent ways to upkeep your physical self while allowing your brain to produce endorphins that can give you a mental boost. And even if your ultimate goal is to build muscle mass, Muscle and Fitness notes that this is possible to, even if you prefer to work out without a spotter.
The point here is that there are many ways to take care of yourself, even when you feel sad. Grief is an emotion like any other, and what you do to your body and with your mind can influence how you experience grief. And even if you do not want to share your feelings with the proverbial class, finding a support group and then working on yourself are the best ways to stay strong when that’s what you need to be.
Written by: Lucille Rosetti, TheBereaved.org
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