Self-help techniques

What is important if I have been involved in a violent incident myself?

Accept that it is natural to react

Acknowledge all feelings, thoughts and actions, even those you find frightening and strange. It helps to cry.

Share your thoughts and feelings with others

Show your weaknesses so that people around you don’t believe you are managing all by yourself. Accept other people’s support and care. If possible, spend time with other people who have had similar experiences. It is particularly important that you share your experiences with the other people who were involved in the event and those who are close to you.

Keep telling

– even once it is no longer news. Find people to confide in. Every time you talk about how you feel, parts of the difficult experience will be resolved.

Confront reality

- preferably together with someone you know and trust: Look at photographs, look at the things which were damaged or destroyed, visit the places and people you associate with what happened, return to the scene of the accident, see the deceased if you have lost someone close to you and attend the funeral.

Allow those around you to react

Let your children and those close to you express their feelings and thoughts. Everyone will be affected by the situation in their own way.

Maintain your daily routines

Resume working as soon as you think you are up to it. Perhaps ask for a special arrangement or ‘light work’ to help you through the hardest period.

Look after yourself

New accidents – also traffic accidents – are more likely to happen after a terrible event.

Seek distraction

Every so often, make sure you turn your mind to something else and do something enjoyable. Physical activity is good as it counteracts stress in the body. It is also okay – and beneficial – to be able to look forward to things in life, both large and small.

Read more about stress here

Get a good night’s sleep

If, initially, you find it hard to fall asleep at night, try drinking a glass of beer or asking your doctor for light sleep medication.

Don’t turn your back on the problems

When life is difficult, it is tempting to use escapist remedies such as medication, alcohol or hectic activity. These might relieve the immediate pain, but if they develop into a lifestyle, then new problems will emerge.

Seek help

If you yourself, your family and your network are unable to help you deal with the incident and your reactions, you should seek help through your doctor or immediate superior.

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