Imagining a future without your partner can be an incredibly intimidating thing. Often times, seniors will experience an immense amount of grief followed by difficulty making decisions, an inability to concentrate, a loss of appetite, and trouble sleeping. During this time, it’s important to keep busy. Find a support group or person that you can openly express your feelings with. By developing new interests outside of your home, you can start to cope with this new stage in your life.
Read more to see the ways you can handle grief after losing a spouse:
Keep Yourself Busy
After losing a spouse, doing anything productive can feel like a daunting task. Grief can take a toll on one’s health and, if not approached properly, can lead to severe depression. Recognize that there is no proper way to express the pain you feel and that everyone handles situations differently. Allow the daily tasks in life to comfort you, whether that be grocery shopping, cleaning, or doing laundry. Occupying your mind provides you with a brief rest from grief. The last thing you should do is sit and overthink, but don’t keep too busy that you completely avoid your feelings. Find a common ground between remaining busy and watching for signs of avoidance as you begin a new routine in your life.
Whether you find help in a friend, family member, or seek professional support, it is extremely beneficial to openly talk about your feelings. Seeking support can be a powerful tool in self-discovery and finding fulfillment in life, and talking with others who have also experienced the loss of a spouse may prove very useful for you. If you feel that grief has taken a toll on your health, talk to your doctor. Finding a source of support can help you to get out of the house and encourage you to move forward with your life.
Try a New Hobby
Moving on with your life without your partner is hard. The routine that you once had or things that you did together are no longer enjoyable for you. Rather than remaining in your home for 24 hours a day, explore a new passion that gives you an opportunity to get outside and connect with new people. Finding a new hobby allows you to re-envision new and exciting ways to add meaning and purpose to your life. Some hobbies may include going for a walk, joining a new club, or learning something new. Grieving takes time and every senior does it at their own pace. It never truly goes away but you do learn to live with it.
Establish a New Way of Life
It is a daily challenge trying to transform the pain from the loss of a spouse into regaining strength to proceed through your everyday life. You may feel the weight of their absence in everything that you do. So now what? Find a new normal. After losing a loved one, you will have to find a way to heal yourself. Become your own number one priority. Devise a plan that allows you to rebuild your life and set goals that make you want to get out of bed in the morning. There is no shortcut in overcoming grief. As time passes, you will begin to heal and it may not hurt as much as it once did.
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