How to support and help yourself

– in difficult life situations 

  • Speak with one or more people, who you feel comfortable talking to. Describe how you are feeling, and what you are thinking about what has happened.
  • Remember that all of your reactions are normal. It is healthy to express any anxious or strange feelings you may be experiencing. It may be easier to “act out” your feelings than to talk about them: Draw, paint, write, play music, dance, run, be physically active,...
  • Have awareness of the tension in your body, and attempt to relax. Be aware of your breathing, and relieve the tension in your muscles through relaxation exercises or other physical activities.
  • Listen to what those closest to you have to say about your situation - it affects them as well.
  • Be considerate of yourself. Ensure that you maintain a healthy diet, and avoid alcohol and unnecessary medication. Engage in exercise, as it helps your body relieve tension.
  • If you find it difficult to summon the energy for especially demanding tasks, be sure to continue doing normal routine tasks. Particularly, ensure you continue engaging in activities you usually enjoy doing, especially outside of work.
  • If you are experiencing symptoms of anxiety or insomnia, avoid self-medication - seek professional help.
  • Acknowledge your loss or your situation. It takes time to accept the new situation.
  • Remember that some people respond more strongly than others in the same situation.
  • Remember that with time, your normal reactions to an abnormal event will fade. It is healthy to react abnormally to an abnormal event. In other words, the foreign feelings and thoughts you experience in this time, are normal. All of your reactions help you through the situation.
  • It is normal to experience thoughts like the following:
    • Am I overreacting or being hysterical? 
    • Why me? 
    • What have I done wrong? 
    • What could I have done to avoid the incident?
    • How will I/my family manage now?
    • Where will we move to now?
    • What else could go wrong?
    • What do other people think of me now?
    • Will I ever feel alright again?
  • It is normal to feel that the meaning of and safety in life is affected, among you and those close to you; your values and the foundation of your life has been disrupted.
  • Remember that little by little, you will recover from the event and its aftereffects - and life will go on. 

You should avoid:

  • Isolating yourself  
  • “Burying yourself” in work
  • Casually joking about the events
  • Trivialising the events
  • Keeping quiet
  • Relieving anxiety with alcohol, pills, etc.
  • “Playing the hero”
  • Making hasty decisions