When Grief Turns into Depression March 8, 2019

Depression in Grief

Sometimes things feel so overwhelming, all you can do to is turn off your emotions and go through the motions of the day. Work needs to get done, people need to be taken care of and the bills need to be paid.  Even when you are in the depths of your grief, the world goes on around you. When someone you love dies the world you have known is gone. It as if your world has stopped but the rest of the world continues on. At some point you are expected to continue as if things are “normal’.

Experiencing grief and doing all the daily tasks that life takes can get really draining.  It feels as though one moment you are feeling an overflow of emotions and the next you are feeling nothing at all. You must shut it all off just to get through the day.  It becomes incredibly overwhelming and can turn to lethargy. When you’ve used every ounce of emotional energy you have and there just is not anything else to give here are some ways to push through the lethargy and feelings of depression.

5 Ways to Combat Depression in Grief

  1. Take a walk in nature.  A dark room with the window shades closed may feel like where you want to be but I encourage you to get up and take a walk. There is nothing like stepping out into nature. It can give you the boost you need along with a breath of fresh air. There is something about breathing in crisp air that revitalizes the human soul.
  1. Set a timer and spend 20 minutes getting tasks done.  When you are feeling lethargic and borderline depressed one of the hardest things to do is to get simple boring tasks done.  Set an alarm and get everything you can done in that time frame. It may not be enough time to complete everything but it will at least give a small sense of accomplishment and potentially motivate you to keep going.
  1. Spend time cuddling or hugging someone or something you love. Kids, Animals, etc.  Cuddling with someone or something you love can release chemicals into your brain that make you feel better.  So grab that little puppy dog or loved one and cuddle up for some hugs.
  1. Personal care.  When grief turns into lethargy often the first thing to go is personal care. It seems pointless and too much of a task or luxury given your pain. It is so important though to take care of your mental and physical health. Go get a massage or a manicure. Maybe even bring a friend or go by yourself. Whatever refuels you the most.
  1. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Help comes in many forms. It could be allowing someone to bring you a meal so you don’t have to cook. You could call in a cleaning crew to tidy up your home. Or even call a friend or a counselor to help you through some of your pain. Isolation breeds more pain. The best form of healing is connecting with others when you’re ready.

Wherever you are in your grief journey know that there are resources and people whose passion and purpose is to be a shining light for YOU. Check out our blog on Twin Cities Grief Groups if you’re ready to start connecting with people again.

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