What do we do in times of tragedy? Crisis? Or any situation that causes stress and big emotions!

Home 9 General 9 What do we do in times of tragedy? Crisis? Or any situation that causes stress and big emotions!

Here are some tips we found that may be helpful  for how you can take care of yourselves:

  • Talk it out. Remember that it’s OK not to be OK  with the news you are hearing around you. Do not feel ashamed to talk about it with your community and how it is making you feel. Sitting with uncomfortable feelings is hard but distress tolerance is a good way to learn to manage those feelings in an effective way. Do not wait until things get too much before you address and recognize its impact.

  • Name your feelings. Events like mass shootings and tragic deaths of those in our community are tragic for many groups of people and for those of us witnessing them unfold through the news and on social media. Give your feelings a name and acknowledge them. Whether it is anger, grief, fear, or any other emotion, name them and sit with them rather than trying to avoid them. And as part of that, make sure you do something intentional to care for yourself.

  • Engage in activities of self-care. Make sure you are honoring yourself by taking care of you. Eat nutritious meals. Get proper rest. Make sure you engage in physical activity — whether that’s formal exercise or any other kind of healthy movement. Spend time in a place you love or with people you love who help you feel affirmed. Try to avoid alcohol or drugs. And if you are still struggling with anxiety, try some relaxation exercises like deep breathing or meditation. Gentle yoga can also be very helpful.

  • Log off. Avoid the endless time spent scrolling to figure out every detail of the incident. Social media and news sites can be overwhelming. If you need to, create structure around how you engage with them; identifying clear times to read and or watch news and social media can be a small way to balance staying informed but not consumed. If you must be online, remember that task switching — jumping consciously or unconsciously from one task or platform to another — especially when it involves emotionally charged topics, can be extremely draining. Allow yourself dedicated time to do that activity or digest the content. Acknowledging your emotions is an active step you can take to help mitigate feeling overwhelmed by what’s on the Internet after an event of mass tragedy.

  • Talk to the kids and young people in your life. If you have littles or young people in your life, don’t be afraid to speak with them about these events. Let them guide the conversation with their questions and respond using age-appropriate explanations. Be clear and make sure kids understand why something happened, to help them avoid feelings of responsibility for events beyond their control. Remember that it’s OK to acknowledge that adults don’t always understand events or why they happen either.