by Jan McDaniel
Life must have balance, and never is that more important or more difficult than after loss. I talk and write a lot about healing by taking small steps and establishing a simple path for reaching goals. But sometimes life does these things for us and expects us to follow rather than lead.
I changed jobs three months after my husband died and went from being a newspaper reporter covering hard news on the front page above the fold to teaching college English. Other classes were assigned, too, and tutoring duties. One of these classes was a practical life type instruction that covered basic living skills first year students might need to make their transition from high school to college easier.
Goal setting, one of the topics, was one of my favorites, and much of what came to me over the years might have been meant to help me make my own transition.
No matter where you are in your healing journey, try to make your schedule simple. Include work, but also include time for play and rest. We only heal in the span of a moment. Time might look like it is standing still, but that is an illusion.
Work, play, rest. That's not always easy or even possible. But taking one tiny moment at a time can help.
Here are a few examples of what I mean. Use them as starts for your day or change the words. What's important is just to begin.
*Today, I can take one deep breathe.
*I will drink water because my body needs it.
*I can hug someone still in my life.
*Do I have choices today?
*It won't take long to walk around the parking lot at lunch.
*Maybe I should call an understanding friend.
*It's okay to sit outside this evening and just be still.
Way for Hope
Losing someone you love is difficult, but it can mean a lot to hear from others traveling similar paths.
Links of Value:
Alliance of Hope for Suicide Loss Survivors
National Alliance on Mental Illness
Word of God
"My Story" Big Daddy Weave
"Hope in Front of Me"
The Joy FM
Traumatic loss or preexisting conditions can worsen mental health. Use this info graphic to find help.
"Take Charge of Your Mental Health" - a free download from www.nami.org: