- Turn off the news. Give yourself permission to take a break from the images, thoughts and emotions related to this tragic event. As with a car accident, when something terrifying or tragic occurs, we can feel compelled to watch and gather information about the event. But it’s important to your emotional well-being to get a break from it.
- Distract yourself. If you’re plagued by persistent thoughts or painful emotions, try engaging in physical or mental activities that take your mind off of it. You might try things such as going to a movie, exercising, doing a puzzle or playing a video game.
- Help others. One of the most effective ways to feel better is to help others. Whether it’s volunteering for a charity, watching a neighbors pet or saying kind words to someone else, helping others can improve how you are feeling.
- Do something opposite to how you’re feeling. You may be feeling angry, sad or depressed. Don’t take lightly the impact a pleasant experience can have on your mood and emotions. Some things you might try include watching a funny TV show, talking to a light-hearted friend or listening to comforting holiday songs or upbeat music.
- Soothe yourself. Often when we’re in the midst of painful emotions we neglect to do the things that can make us feel calm and relaxed. You might try lighting a scented candle, baking cookies, wearing soft clothing, putting on a special scented lotion or looking at pictures of loved ones or special times.
- The family, friends, and neighbors who just show up to take care of the daily needs of those grieving.
- The parents whose bond to each other helps them walk together through this nightmare
- The Moms and Dads who in holding their big and small children closer, with or without words, reduce the horror of what was experienced, witnessed or even seen on the media.
- The Spiritual Caregivers whose presence affords a safe haven for many.
1st two articles are from Finding Hope in Times of Grief
Third article: http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2012/12/19/strategies-to-help-bear-our-anguish/
Last article: http://blogs.psychcentral.com/healing-together/2012/12/connecticut-catastrophe-how-do-you-face-the-loss-of-children/
Suzanne B. Phillips, Psy.D., ABPP is a licensed psychologist. She is Adjunct Professor of Clinical Psychology in the Doctoral Program of Long Island University and on the faculty of the Post-Doctoral Programs of the Derner Institute of Adelphi University. Suzanne Phillips, PsyD and Dianne Kane are the authors of Healing Together: A Couple's Guide to Coping with Trauma and Post-Traumatic Stress. Learn more about their work at couplesaftertrauma.com . Visit Suzanne's Facebook Page HERE.