Many times, after losing a loved one, those who are grieving find themselves dealing with their loss in solitude. They find it easier to stay indoors watching TV, scrolling through social media, and ignoring incoming texts and phone calls. During a difficult time, it requires less energy to stay home than to go out and face the questions, comments, or expressions of sympathy from others. But finding ways to deal with emotions – including the painful ones – is an important step in the healing process.
At St. Pierre Family Funeral & Cremation Services, we have seen time and again the importance of grief support following the loss of a loved one. We are always here for you, even long after the funeral service has passed. As a person grieves, one important but often minimized element of healing is spending time outdoors. To provide support during a time of grieving, our staff has gathered some of our favorite ideas for finding grief support in nature
- Go for a walk, hike, or bike ride.
Going outside doesn’t mean you have to go somewhere special or make plans in advance. It can be as simple as going for a walk or bike ride around your neighborhood or finding a nearby park that you enjoy. If you feel like being around others, invite a friend or family member to walk, hike, or bike with you.
- Explore a body of water.
Whether it’s a lake, river, ocean, or pool, being in or around water can help you feel more at peace. Close your eyes and listen to the sound of the water. Maybe take some time to meditate, or just enjoy the calmness of where you are. In the aftermath of a loss, you might find yourself running around, overwhelmed by your to-do list. Give yourself time to slow down.
- Go stargazing.
Enjoying nature doesn’t have to occur during the day; there is just as much beauty waiting to be discovered at night. Grab a chair or blanket and head outside, even if just in your own backyard. The longer you are outside, the brighter the stars will appear. Try to identify constellations or make up your own by connecting the stars.
- Find a quiet place to reflect.
Try taking one of your favorite self-care practices and bring it outside. Some self-care ideas include reading, meditating, journaling, practicing yoga, or even just sitting silently to allow yourself space to reflect. You will likely experience a wide range of emotions when you’re grieving. It’s important to find outlets to help you feel those emotions in a healthy, productive way.
- Watch a sunrise or sunset.
Oftentimes, sunrises and sunsets are something we see in passing. Try carving time out of your day specifically to watch the sun rise or set without any distractions. Wake up early for the sunrise, or if you prefer to sleep in, wait for the sunset. Allow yourself to watch the full sunrise or sunset and enjoy spending your time witnessing such a beautiful aspect of our world.
- Bring nature inside.
Find ways to bring the outdoors indoors. Open your windows while you’re watching TV or eating lunch. Sit on your front or back porch. Get a plant for your home, so you always have a small piece of nature inside with you. There are numerous ways to incorporate elements of nature into your day-to-day life without making any complicated plans – you just have to find the ones that you enjoy.
These are only a fraction of the ways you can enjoy the natural beauty in the Indianapolis, Greenwood, and Pendleton areas. Explore what our community has to offer – and feel free to leave a comment below with your additional ideas. If you find yourself needing further support, we have a variety of grief resources available to you 24/7 on our website. You can also reach out to us by phone or in person – we are always here to help.