General

How Writing Helps You Deal with Loss and Grief

 

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 Life is full of challenges. We go through hard times when facing the loss of a loved one. During such tumultuous moments, you often experience feelings of sadness, loneliness, and even depression.

Victims of loss tend to lead reckless lives that sometimes results in drug abuse and even suicide. However, through writing, such people often find solace and peace and, eventually, learn to lead everyday lives.

The Power of Writing

While you might think of writing as just scribbling down some words, but in a real sense, it is a form of expression. Writers, through their stories, express their feelings toward a particular subject.

In this case, the bereaved jots down their emotions, full of both happy and sad memories of the departed. While souvenirs like the jewelry for cremation ashes do a great deal in helping us remember our loved ones, it is only through writing that you feel closest to them.

Writing with a goal of expressing your innermost feelings helps to:

  • Release any conflicting emotions buried inside
  • Understand your emotions better
  • Create space for other thoughts
  • Start a fresh chapter

Types of Writing

While you may not be the best writer, having a flow of thought in your content is therapeutic. Including a writing sequence will help you get a better flow of ideas with every passing session. 

Begin addressing the departed through any of these forms of writing:

Letter

When a loved one dies, we’re left with things we wish we could have told them. These unsaid words often hold us down if locked up inside for too long.

Through a letter, you get the chance to express feelings of anger, love, or despair by clearly articulating your thoughts. Although direct, this approach often gives the griever a sense of freedom as they often tend to cry or laugh the sorrow away.

Begin writing your letter with the standard format and always address the loved one directly. 

For example, you can start like; “we may be apart, but I want to tell you that you were a great …” (then proceed to express yourself).

Memoir

Although gone, our loved ones tend to leave us with a host of memories, both good and bad, that we remember. Arranging such a series of events in an organized fashion is only possible through a memoir.

With a memoir, you can carefully detail good times, special events, or even strong feelings that you shared with the dearly departed.

For example, if you grew up with someone, you can write a memoir about how you lived together, detailing the most notable occurrences during the time.

While most memoirs are meant for the public, you can opt to keep yours private if you so wish.

Fictional Writing

If you have an imaginative sense, you can feel connected to your dear one by including them as a character in a short fictional story.

Allocating a role that best matches the character of the departed shows you hold their life with honor. For example, you may give your dad the role of a superhero in your story to signify the big part he played in your life.

Poems

A poem, although short, is a creative way of expressing emotion in detail to the departed. Feelings and words that are often left unsaid are expressed through rhyme, metaphors, imagery, and simile throughout the poem.

Benefits of Grief Writing

Helps to Avoid Deflecting

Upon learning the passing away of a close relative, our minds sometimes go into a state of shock. During this time, the griever often develops a state of denial as a way of blocking out the traumatic experience.

Helping such a person to accept the reality is only possible through writing. Encourage the griever to express their deepest thoughts and feelings on a loss by writing it down as the first step to moving on.

While avoidance may offer temporary comfort, the long term damage is often permanent.

It Boosts Your Health

Just like therapy, writing offers the chance to vent out your anger, disappointment, and frustrations only through text. By releasing such toxic emotions from your body, you create a calmer, more peaceful atmosphere for better functioning.

With optimal conditions in the body, your blood flows better, and your immunity is at the maximum as well.

Entertain the idea of frequently jotting down thoughts that disturb you to lead a healthier life.

Allows for Better Sleep

Loss is often accompanied by a deep feeling of sadness and loneliness. If long-withheld, such emotions usually bottle up and, as a result, interfere with regular sleep patterns.

Sometimes you may experience moments of deep sleep while others lack it altogether. This imbalance tends to have a significant impact on your physical and mental health and as such, releasing the negative emotion that comes with grieving is crucial.

Sleep peacefully at night by writing away your fears, worries, and doubts moments before retiring to bed.

It is a Constructive Way to Cope

While people find different ways to cope with losing a loved one, writing proves to have the best value. Individuals who look to writing to deal with their grief get through their painful periods faster than those who don’t.

Although you may not become Shakespeare by simply scribbling down your thoughts, it will, however, also boost your literary skills. You get to learn critical staff like sentence flow and structure.

Compared to other forms of expressing grief, writing offers the best return to the writer (griever).

Conclusion

While nothing you do or say will bring back the ones you love, writing helps you to face reality in a straightforward but less prudent manner. Once you’ve experienced significant loss, it can be hard to gather your thoughts at that particular moment.

Instead, give yourself time to internalize the whole situation before beginning to write as a way of coping.

Channel your innermost emotions by writing a letter, memoir, fictional story, and poem to or about the departed. Remember, through this form of expression; you avoid deflecting, sleep better and live a more healthy life.

Award-winning writer, blogger, social media consultant and charity campaigner. Social Media Manager for BritMums, the UK's largest parent blogging network Freelance clients include Firefly Communications and Save the Children UK. Works with brands on marketing projects. Examples include Visit Orlando, Give As You Live, Coca-Cola and Kodak. Cambridge Law graduate with many years experience working across three sectors in advice, media relations, events, training and project management. Available for hire at affordable rates.

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