“When life is foggy, path is unclear and mind is dull, remember your breath. It has the power to give you the peace. It has the power to resolve the unsolved equations of life.”
― Amit Ray, Beautify your Breath – Beautify your Life
One of the many truisms we’ve all heard is that life is not easy. It is wonderful, beautiful, fulfilling, something to celebrate, and joyful, but it certainly is not easy. Day-to-day-living brings with it a series of responsibilities and events that can create situations, where we find ourselves under stressful conditions.
Sometimes, we need to pause and take a deep breath to evaluate and allow us time and space to endure a particular situation we are going through. This is often the case while we are grieving. There are so many thoughts and emotions we feel, not to mention the many logistical details that come with the loss of a loved one.
When we are going through the grief process, or any tough situation, we need to make sure we take care of ourselves physically and emotionally. In an article titled “The Need for Self Compassion,” author Eleanor Haley discusses her creation of the acronym BREATHE—a tool to assist people with showing kindness and compassion to themselves while grieving.
B – Be kind to yourself.
R – Respect your body by not overindulging in alcohol, drugs, and bad food. Get enough sleep and move around at least a little every day.
E – Engage with others in big and/or small ways. You don’t have to be a social butterfly. Just try not to isolate yourself. During COVID-19, this may require contact via video chat rather than in person.
A – Allow your emotions to ebb and flow. Don’t run from them. Expect that grief emotions will bubble up, their intensity will rise, and they will wash over you and recede.
T – Take life one minute, hour, and day at a time. The enormity of what it means to live life without your loved one is overwhelming, but remember that coping with grief is something that happens bit-by-bit and day-by-day
H – Honor, remember and connect with your loved one’s memory and their continued impact on the world.
E – Ease up on expectations about what grief should be like and how you should cope. Remember, there are very few “shoulds” when it comes to coping with grief. Everyone copes in their own way and at their own pace. So give yourself a break.