Coronavirus Has Upended Our World. It's OK To Grieve

Psychologists say that what a lot of us are feeling these days is, in fact, a form of grief. Here's how to honor that feeling and regain equilibrium as we face an unknown future.

3/27/2020

Psychologists say that what a lot of us are feeling as a result of the pandemic is, in fact, a form of grief. Here's how to identify the losses you're feeling — and then regain equilibrium to face an unknown future.

Psychologists say that what a lot of us are feeling these days is, in fact, a form of grief. Here's how to honor that feeling and regain equilibrium as we face an unknown future.

Sonya Lott , a Philadelphia-based psychologist specializing in grief counseling. Yet with our national focus on the daily turn of events as the coronavirus spreads and with the chaos it's brought, these underlying or secondary losses may escape us. People who are physically well may not feel entitled to their emotional upset over the disruption of normal life. Yet, Lott argues, it's important to honor our own losses even if those losses seem small compared to others. "We can't heal what we don't have an awareness of," says Lott. Recognize our losses Whether we've named them are not, these are some of the community-wide losses many of us are grieving. Consider how you feel when you think of these. Social connections – Perhaps the most impactful of the immediate losses as we hunker down at home is the separation from close friends and family."Children aren't able to play together. There's no in-person social engagement, no hugging, no touching which is disruptive to our emotional well-being," says Daniel. Separation from our colleagues and office-mates also creates significant loss. Says Lott:"Our work environment is like a second family. Even if we don't love all the people we work with, we still depend on each other." Habits and habitat – With the world outside our homes no longer safe to inhabit the way we once did, Daniel says we've lost our"habits and habitats," as we can no longer engage in our usual routines and rituals. And no matter how mundane they may have seemed - whether grabbing a morning coffee at the local café, driving to work, or picking up the kids from school – routines help define your sense of self in the world. Losing them, Daniel says,"shocks your system." Assumptions and security– We go to sleep assuming we'll wake up the next morning,"that the sun will be there and your friends will all be alive and you'll be healthy," Weller says. But the spread of the virus has shaken nearly every assumption we once counted on."And so we're losing our sense of safety in the world and our assumptions about ourselves," he says. Trust in our systems– When government leaders, government agencies, medical systems, religious bodies, the stock market and corporations fail to meet public expectations, it can leave citizens feeling betrayed and emotionally unmoored."We are all grieving this loss," Daniel says. Sympathetic loss for others – Even if you're not directly affected by a particular loss, you may be feeling the grief of others, including those of displaced workers, of health care workers on the frontlines, of people barred from visiting elderly relatives in nursing homes, of those who have already lost friends and family to the virus and to those who will. 5 ways to honor your grief Once you identify the losses you're feeling, look for ways to honor the grief surrounding you, grief experts urge. Bear witness and communicate Sharing our stories is an essential step, Daniel says. "If you can't talk about what's happened to you and you can't share it, you can't really start working on it," Daniel says."So, communicate with your friends and family about your experience." It can be as simple as picking up the phone and calling a friend or family member, says Weller. He suggests simply asking for and offering a space in which to share your feelings without either of you offering advice or trying to fix anything for the other. "Grief is not a problem to be solved," he says."It's a presence in the psyche awaiting, witnessing." For those with robust social networks, Daniel suggests gathering a group of friends virtually to share these losses together. Using apps, such as Zoom, Skype, Facetime or Facebook Live, virtual meetups are easy to set up on a daily or weekly basis. Write, create, express Whether you're an extrovert or introvert, keeping a written or recorded journal of these days offers another way to express, to identify and to acknowledge loss and grief. And then there's art therapy, which can be especially helpful for children unable to express well with words, for teens and even for many adults. "Make a sculpture, draw a picture or create a ceremonial object," says Daniel, who often incorporates shamanic ceremonies into grief workshops she conducts. Another exercise she often uses in grief workshops is a simple one in which participants use their breath to blow their sadness, fear and anger into a rock that they then throw away. "What this does is takes all that intense, painful energy out of your body and into an inanimate object that they symbolically throw far away from themselves," Daniel says. Meditate Regular meditation and just taking time to slow down and take several deep, calming breaths throughout the day also works to lower stress and is available to everyone, Lott says. For beginners who want guidance she suggests downloading a meditation app onto your smart phone or computer. Be open to joy And finally, Lott urges, make sure to let joy and gratitude into your life during these challenging times. Whether it's a virtual happy hour, tea time or dance party, reach out to others, she says. "If we can find gratitude in the creative ways that we connect with each other and help somebody," she says,"then we can hold our grief better and move through it with less difficulty and more grace." This story was produced in partnership with Kaiser Health News. Read more: NPR

Don't grieve - Get Angry!!! NPR makes my skin crawl. They use it all of the time, “Here’s what you need to know about the debate...” “Here’s how...” is their little way of making you comfortable with them telling you how to think, feel, act and vote. Informative 🙏🥰 Grief can be short lived when accompanied by faith and trust in an all powerful all merciful God who will get us through this if we work together in a spirit of love and cooperation.

Other reasons too stevenuniversefinale you are inciting more depression by this please stop posting information like this To all psychologists: you should ALL be offering a sliding scale fee structure if you aren’t already doing so. APA It’s okay to feel whatever it is you are feeling. It’s okay to be sad, feel anxious, feel scared. It’s okay to feel numb. It’s okay to feel nothing. I’m trying my best to feel hopeful. It’s cliche but so true, we’re all in this together.

In addition to grieving for ill, dead, loved ones, health providers, and devastion to livelihood of many, I grieve for America. If America and Potus had their past role in world leadership, funding for WHO, CDC, & NSC, plans, honesty, & compassion, CoV19 would have been minimal. Some of us feel grief, some anxiety -others anger. All normal reactions to this crisis. MoreThanEverBefore we must take care of our emotional well-being EVERY DAY. Help us reach those most vulnerable.

I'm not planning on processing any of this until late May.

Stephen Colbert Unveils His Bold New Look After MakeoverYou might even say it's heroic as the talk show host copes with coronavirus confinement boredom. He’s not funny 'heroic' I love StephenAtHome!!

My stress is caused by trump and the GOP along with the people believing their daily lies and voting for them. I just don’t understand their cult devotion to people who could care less about them. This article makes perfect sense. However it misses the fact that there is a political division going on despite our best efforts to unite and win. It's the 'grief on purpose' from our president. He thrives on our sadness and uncertain future. He threatens us while grieving.

I feel guilty because I am, largely, not grieving. I feel relief as the weight of the world has been lifted off my shoulders. I want to see the end of this quickly for the sake of my fellow humans, but fear returning to the chaos that so overwhelmed me before What about righteous anger against capitalism

Read Camus Nice work being original NPR: Great article! Thanks, ! No shit 'Whether you're an extrovert or introvert, keeping a written or recorded journal of these days offers another way to express, to identify and to acknowledge loss and grief.' My journaling reflects the mindset of someone being terrorized. These are horrible times.

It’s widespread grief and chronic micro to major trauma. On a continuum, trauma is when our sense of normalcy and safety gets punctured. More reason to be kind. (My background is in outpatient clinical treatment of trauma and trauma related disorders.)

Coronavirus crisis: $1 trillion in debt may be distressed, UBS warns - Business InsiderUBS: The coronavirus crisis has pushed $1 trillion in corporate debt to the brink of default. Here's where to expect the most carnage — and which industries will be spared. What do you think about the Hantavirus with a 38% mortality rate, it is unlikely to spread though? We might aswell re elect trump because he preaty much is screwing us all the way to china.

grief that you couldn't destroy Donald Trump...yet again...for God's sake get a life This article really sums it up. Thanks. The American people are also feeling betrayed by our government, the President, those politicians who lied to us & failed to act until it was too late. I’m feeling like.this is cool. We’re figuring out shit. It’s ok. My gf is here video conferencing to work. Impressive. More communication w family. bleach incoming packages. New thinking. If I get the virus I’m dead. 10 yrs into blood cancer fight. But it’s life. noPanzies

Joan Didion wrote that the grief of a massive social change is 'a sustained reactive depression, a bereavement reaction to the leaving of familiar environments.' How else to describe that American exceptionalism was all a lie, no one is safe & it was THIS easy to fully destroy? ShireenQudosi Hell no. I am absolutely over the moon watching the show unfold. TheGreatAwakeningWorldwide TheStormIsUponUs

This is exactly what I realized today. Know many more people feeling anger and resentment toward a lying, abusive, overreactive government that doesn't give two-shits about the people. It thrives on power--could care less whether or not their policies are economically raping citizens. POTUS GOP TheDemocrats MAGA

And one stage of grief is anger Maybe we should just be compassionate with the jerks? Problem is I am grieving too. I can identify two main losses. That of freedom under quarantine and that of the mind when seeing idiots ignoring social distancing directives.

A search for answers in 17-year-old boy's death that may be linked to coronavirusCoronavirus: Lancaster teenager's father had contracted the virus, although it's not known how. still have a pay wall for coronavirus stories? shameful

BondageLand Sounds about right... I've had a lot of friends say that this StayAtHomeOrder has made them feel very depressed. Some even saying that they miss going to work. This idea of grieving over a lost routine makes some of those feelings make a lot more sense. MEDI255 annoyed bragg_lindsey I think I’m going to use a part of this article as a mentor text for my COVID journal. It’s a good read.

Great article. I am about a year ahead of everyone. If grief is unmitigated rage, yes I’m definitely grieving. What I'm feeling is bored and claustrophobic Yes there are five phases- we are at 2nd and entering 3rd. Are you trying to say that the coronavirus panic relieves your TDS?

Coronavirus live updates: 192 dead in New York City; NYU offers medical students early graduationChurch leaders in Italy and Brazil pray before photos of the faithful sent in amid social distancing practices to stem the outbreak of COVID-19. No toke over the line... Nothing else to do is to burn!! AtHome Signs you may have a problem.....

Screw u NPR! Fear mongers! Abraham Maslow, a somewhat marginalized psychologist from the 1900s wrote about persons intended life trajectory being Integral to a persons mental health and interruptions, even short ones, can change a persons psychology permanently. Which is something to grieve about imo I've felt a sense of loss and despair since election night when this low-rent classless moronic racist criminal was elected and set to work destroying this country.

Healing blessings 0.0003% of Americans have COVID19 ... Terrifying Stop Watching News. DEATH COUNTS aren't helpful. If you suffer from Trump Derangement Syndrome, DO NOT FEED YOUR ILLNESS. Stop watching Trump video cuts. Stop seeking the drugs that makes you feel hate. Turn off NPR. And also realize what you’ve taken for granted for so long!

I feel resignation... that the best of times are behind us. I’m grateful since I’m 47 and have fulfilled all my dreams. I try not to think about the ramifications for my nieces and nephews. I worry about my parents in their 80s, but know they’ve lived full lives😞 NPR should be embarrassed to accept $75 million when so many Americans are feeling so much pain. How many ventilators could NYC buy with $75 million. What a travesty. HOW DARE YOU, NPR? DefundNPR

TheLandMan305 never been so low

Coronavirus deaths cross 192 in New York City; NYU offers medical students early graduationChinese state media footage shows firefighters disinfecting a train station in Wuhan as the city prepares for the restoration of public transport. 人才 I need that glue!😁 A little 'on-the-nose' ?

Shut up! How do you think 💭 people are suppose to feel and they don’t know what this virus is or where it comes from!🖕🏾 It has felt like...something. Ennui. Angst. Low grade anger. I haven’t been able to put my finger on it but grief makes sense. What I am feeling is a white hot rage that we have a psychopath for a president who is going to get a lot of people killed and no one is doing anything to put an end to this tragedy.

grief? im not Me Alpha's push through it, the Beta's whine.

Coronavirus live updates: Prince Charles tests positive for COVID-19A pandemic of the novel coronavirus has now killed nearly 19,000 people around the world. Get well Charles jack_100d China and WHO should be held accountable! ChineseVirus ChinaLiedAndPeopleDied ChineseWuhanVirus WHO



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