How to Cope with Grief While at Work

How to Cope with Grief at Work

black women

You likely witnessed what happened with the 2016 election last night or you got the news first thing this morning. If you’re anything like many of us here, you’re likely at a loss, flabbergasted, disappointed, ill, and grieving.

I can’t imply that there is a fix for what you’re feeling, as the general sentiment is to simply push through. What we can do, though, is offer a few antidotes for coping with your grief while at work so that you may, at least, make it through the day–or just the moment.

Check below–hope this helps.

1. Communicate

Let your co-workers know that you’re grieving so that your mood is accounted for. They will understand if you’re short, unresponsive, reclusive, detached, snide, emotional, sick, etc. In fact, many of them may be feeling the exact same way. Let them know and find your support and community in that space.

2. Silence

Sometimes the best thing to say when you’re overwhelmed with emotion is nothing. Be still. Allow the moment to pass, if that is even possible. Say nothing as to avoid saying too much. The price of your words and actions can be higher than you expect. Be still, be quiet, and sift through what you’re feeling.


3. State your needs

This aligns with communication. If you need to be alone, let your co-workers know. If you aren’t in a place to answer questions, take meetings, or provide feedback, say that. If you don’t want hugs, or advice, or support, say that too. We all cope with grief differently. This is your time for you. Everyone around you has been there at some point. You have permission to self-preserve.


4. Go home.

If you know, before going into work, that you will have nothing to give, consider staying home. Trust that your higher-ups and co-workers will understand. Your mental health is far more important than your workload, rest assured. Take time to be in your personal space to process your grievances. If while at work you feel overwhelmed and can’t take it anymore, leave. This will not only help you but those also those around you.


5. Talk to Someone Who Understands

There is nothing lonelier than grief. Nothing. It may help, however, to find someone who can somewhat relate to what you’re feeling and may share your experience. Even the slightest bit of relief may come in knowing that you’re not the only one. They are still standing and so will you.

We don’t have nearly all the answers, but it’s a start. If you have an efficient way of dealing with grief while at work, let us know. We’re all in this thing together.