There are a number of ways that tragedy can be dealt with that may seem like platitudes, or completely out of the norm. Oftentimes, a cliche is a cliche because it has some truth to it.
The old adage that keeping yourself busy can preoccupy your mind is not just a phrase that people use to invalidate what their friends or family might be feeling. Busying yourself with crafting or a hobby is an excellent way to refocus. The difficulty though may come in from having to get up the willpower to do the thing. In the end, it is important to remember that the only way to go on is by moving forward. Initially, it will be hard to get up in the morning and do the thing that is in front of you. And again, this is where a cliche comes in helpful. One foot in front of the other. Brush your teeth, put on your shoes, tie your laces, drink some water, go for a run. Then, and only then, can you begin to think about the day. Think about the things you can do to occupy your mind, to distract yourself from the trauma. Crafting anything from paintings to jewelry boxes to banners advertising a new business (that you managed to grow from home with all your time to think) are excellent ways forward. By keeping your hands busy, your mind focuses on the task and less energy is spent obsessing over past events.
Get out and get away
All joking aside, that trip to Las Vegas is not the worst idea. Maybe don’t go too far into the bingeing, or the gambling. But the essence of being in a new environment can be refreshing and rejuvenating to the point of resetting your thoughts to a more peaceful, happier place. Distractions can be found in so many ways – hiking, sight-seeing, visiting the old-world tourist traps all across Europe. And if money is tight and you just can’t afford the expense, consider visiting a friend, whether it’s family, an old classmate, or a new friend from a therapy group. Different environments offer different perspectives and release the mind from the same nagging thoughts that cycle through it at constant contact with the same old same old.
Write it down
Write, draw, paint, craft, make music. The human mind has a lot of faults, but what it lacks oftentimes in compassion or coherence, it makes up for in the ability to create. And it’s a universal truth that pain makes artists of the most unlikely people. Whatever it is your hands want to do, let them. Let the feelings flow out of you onto the page or the canvas in a therapeutic flourish. It’ll be like syphoning all the bad things from your mind and putting them in front of you in black and white for you to look at, analyse, and see them for what they really are: a few bad memories in a lifetime of good ones.
Speaking of music, this music video by Shakira cheers me up almost everytime: