Have you ever been anticipating and anticipating and anticipating grief to the point that once the occasion happens you feel the energy sucked right out of you afterwards? I like to call this the grief hangover.  

Anticipating the grief hangover

Sometimes by preparing yourself for the grief you’ll experience on any given holiday, such as Father’s Day, you can drain yourself of a lot of your energy reserves. By the time the holiday has come and gone, you may feel more exhausted than usual.  

I like to anticipate this exhaustion and plan some self-care for when it occurs.  For those of you who do drink or who have experienced a hangover, think about how our bodies generally need some rest as well as nourishment to repair themselves when in this state.  This is the same for a grief hangover.

Some tips for taking care of yourself when you’re in this state include:
  • Simply having self-awareness and some self-compassion when a grief hangover shows up can help you move through the process and come out the other side.  
  • Try not to schedule too much for a few days after any anticipated grief.  Try to think ahead and see what space you can free up for some down time.
  • Look at scheduling some things that soothe you, like a spa service, or a night camping in wilderness
  • After you’ve rested, try to schedule something that will replenish your energy, like something you are passionate about. Horseback riding does this for me.

There are many ways we can work through the exhaustion of grief, sometimes talking through the process with a counsellor can help.  If you are looking for some other tips as to how to deal with a grief hangover please feel free to contact Strong Counselling for a session.