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Dealing with the Ongoing Process of Grief

It’s important to remember that grief can be an on-going process. Everyone’s grief is unique and people deal with the emotion in their own way and in their own time. It may help to know that feelings of intense grief will lessen over time. Here are some thoughts to help you cope.

  • Grief can be an on-going process. It can take on different forms and meaning over time. With time, the intensity and feelings of grief do change. The remembrance of a loss can be a day to appreciate the happy times you shared with your loved one, even though you’re still grieving his or her loss.
  • Grief does not mean, “letting go.” Your loved ones will always be an important part of your life. Part of the grieving process involves keeping your loved one with you emotionally, even though he or she is no longer with you physically, as you continue to move forward with your life. This is a subtle process that happens over time.
  • Grief does not have a set schedule. Denial, disbelief, anger and sadness are common feelings associated with the grief process. Some people feel that once you “work through” your feelings, they are over and you move on to the next phase of your life. However, the feelings you experience won’t come in any set order or over a specific period of time.
  • Grief involves growth. Coping with the death of a loved one is an experience no one wants to go through. Yet working through grief and sorting through your intense emotions may cause you to learn new things about yourself and find new strengths that can result in emotional growth or maturity. Try to embrace these changes.1
If you have lost a loved one, you may have experienced several phases of dealing with grief. If you feel you are having particular difficulty dealing with your grief, for example, if you are having trouble carrying out your day-to-day activities or if the feelings of grief and loss frequently overwhelm you, you may want to talk to a professional for guidance and coping strategies.

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For further information and support you may wish to contact your Employee Assistance Program or Personnel Office.

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