When Grief Hits You Out of Nowhere

Grief is an overwhelming and complex emotion that can suddenly hit us, leaving us feeling lost and shattered. It's a natural response to loss, and it doesn't follow a linear path.
By illume Editorial Team
Last updated: Jul 13, 2023
10 min read
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The painful feelings of losing a loved one can resurface unexpectedly, even long after their passing. Understanding and managing grief is crucial to healing and finding a way to embrace life again.

Building a Strong Support System: 

During the grieving process, the support of family members and friends can provide comfort and strength. Your loved ones play a vital role in helping you cope with grief. They can offer a listening ear, understanding, and empathy. Reach out to them and let them be there for you. Don’t hesitate to share your feelings, memories, and stories of your loved one. Sharing your grief can alleviate the burden and bring solace.

Additionally, consider seeking support from a therapist or counselor specializing in grief counseling. They can provide professional guidance and help you navigate the challenging emotions associated with grief, such as sadness, guilt, anger, and fear. Support groups are also beneficial, as they provide a safe space to connect with others who have experienced similar losses. Sharing stories of healing and hope can provide inspiration and validation.

Understanding Your Emotions: 

Grief often involves a range of emotions, including intense sadness. It’s essential to acknowledge and allow yourself to feel these emotions without judgment or criticism. There are various stages of grief, including denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. However, these stages are not linear and can overlap or occur in a different order for each individual. It’s crucial to be patient with yourself and allow the grieving process to unfold naturally.

Self-compassion is key during this challenging time. Treat yourself with kindness and understanding. Engage in self-care activities that bring you comfort and solace, such as taking walks in nature, practicing mindfulness and meditation, or indulging in activities that bring you joy. Remember that healing takes time, and it’s okay to take breaks and prioritize your well-being.

Prioritizing Your Mental Health: 

Grief can take a toll on your mental health, leading to challenges such as depression and anxiety. If you find yourself experiencing persistent or overwhelming symptoms, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. A mental health provider can offer guidance, support, and specialized therapies tailored to your needs. They can help you navigate the complexities of grief and provide tools to cope with its impact on your mental well-being.

In addition to professional help, finding healthy coping strategies is crucial. Engaging in physical activities, such as exercise or yoga, can release endorphins, elevate your mood, and help manage stress levels. Creative outlets, such as writing, painting, or playing music, can serve as powerful tools for expression and healing. Surround yourself with positive influences, practice self-care, and be patient with your healing journey.

Navigating Different Types of Grief: 

Grief can manifest in various ways, and some individuals may experience complicated grief. This type of grief involves intense and prolonged symptoms that significantly impact daily life. If you find yourself struggling with complicated grief or persistent flashbacks, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. A mental health provider can offer specialized interventions and therapies to help you navigate and heal from complicated grief.


Coping with grief is a deeply personal journey that requires understanding, support, and self-compassion. Building a strong support system of family members and friends, seeking professional help when needed, and finding healthy coping strategies are essential for healing. Remember that grief doesn’t have a set timeline, and each person’s experience is unique. Allow yourself the time and space to grieve, embrace the support available to you, and have faith in your ability to heal and embrace life again.

By acknowledging your emotions, prioritizing your mental health, and seeking support from your loved ones and professionals, you can navigate the complexities of grief and find solace in your healing journey. Embrace the memories of your loved one and honor their legacy as you move forward with hope and resilience.

Discover Grief Support with Grief Works by Illume

Seeking support during the grieving process is essential. Rest assured, the Grief Works app is here to assist you. It provides guidance to overcome grief, offers a caring community, monthly live calls with Julia Samuel, and the opportunity to chat with a therapist when needed. 

Additionally, the app includes a built-in journal for your daily reflections and follows the Grief Works Curriculum to help you navigate this healing journey.

Remember, healing from grief takes time, and finding the right support can make all the difference.