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What To Do - Set Goals

Giving yourself a smaller measuring stick can help rebuild your sense of accomplishment little by little.

How does this help?

Grief can interrupt your life greatly, especially in the first few months following trauma. Setting goals for yourself can be very overwhelming and a source of stress in itself if you set goals that are too difficult to attain or distant in the future.

Setting goals can be very helpful in easing your mind and stress. Goals should be approached in a way that improve your mood and quality of life. It is important to remember that goals that were once attainable before your trauma may need to be rescaled while you get back on your feet. Think of this like a measuring stick. Often times after trauma you can feel a sense of failure because even accomplishing small things may be difficult. But this was before your life was greatly affected by grief. Giving yourself a smaller measuring stick can help rebuild your sense of accomplishment little by little.

How can I do this?

Start by setting small goals each day. This can be as simple as checklists of tasks and responsibilities you want to get done that day. You can also add things that incorporate what kinds of healthy activities you want to be doing, what you want your life to be like, etc. These small daily goals are the stepping stones that can eventually lead you to larger goals. Recognize your limits and separate things that must be done from those that can wait. Try not to worry about keeping up with your usual schedule.

When you achieve a goal, take time to recognize that achievement, no matter how big or small. Rewarding yourself or doing something that marks the progress you’ve made can be very beneficial in renewing your sense of self-sufficiency and accomplishment.

It is also helpful to share these goals with friends and family who will support you. Some goals may be more difficult than others and require more effort, so enlisting the help of others to keep you focused and feeling good about your progress can be beneficial.