Managing Emotions Following A Tragedy

The Jed Foundation  recently addressed managing our emotions following a tragedy such as the one in Manchester earlier this week:

“You don’t need to personally know a victim, live in Manchester or be a fan of the artist to feel the impact of this horrific event. Given the relentless media coverage and the randomness of this tragedy, it is understandable that any of us might feel emotionally triggered or connected to the events that occurred in Manchester. Further, many people might feel uneasy about their own plans to attend large concerts/events or vulnerable about their appreciation for this particular artist. Some may experience the Manchester bombing as a reminder of their own prior trauma, which might complicate or amplify their response to the recent attack.

In the aftermath of a tragedy, it’s normal to feel powerless, sadness, anxiety, fear, anger or any mix of these emotions. We encourage everyone to reach out to family, friends or counselors to express your feelings and explore effective and healthy ways to cope with your emotions.

In the next few days and weeks, it will be important to look out for each other – be particularly aware of signs that indicate you or someone you know may be feeling hopeless including:

  • Withdrawing and isolating oneself
  • Sleeping all the time or not enough
  • Using drugs or alcohol more than usual
  • Talking about death or dying

At a time like this, the simple things will help. Try to:

  • Stay open – talk to friends, family and loved ones about your feelings
  • Stay present – take breaks from social media and the news
  • Stay active – take a walk, go to the gym, run errands
  • Stay connected – spend time with family and friends, volunteer for a cause that’s important to you

Please take care of yourself and those around you – physical health and emotional connectedness can go a long way toward making you feel like yourself again.”

If you or someone you know is experiencing signs of distress, please reach out to a mental health professional or get anonymous, free support text LookUp to 494949 or call 800-284-8439.

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