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The world was shocked and saddened to learn about a new tragedy in America at the announcement of the mass shooting in Las Vegas. Without going into much detail, many lives were lost and many people were injured. Immediately, videos started circulating around the internet, across news stations, and all over social media channels. In Orlando, where a similar tragedy took place last year, survivors, witnesses, family members, and others who were on scene during or after were experiencing retraumatization. Counseling centers and phone lines opened back up to therapeutically support people in recovery from their experience.

During such times, those who have directly experienced similar traumatizing tragedies are often triggered. Their PTSD, trauma, anxiety, or depression suddenly comes alive in a stronger way. However, others who have anxiety, depression, and symptoms similar to PTSD who have not directly experienced an exact similar situation are still triggered. Trauma and tragedy, in any form, is difficult for people to consume and cope with. When such a traumatic tragedy is on the news every moment of every day immediately following an event, it can feel like there is no time to cope. Having your symptoms triggered in the meantime makes it feel like you are on double time when it comes to your awareness. Now is the most essential time to practice self-care and take care of yourself in mind, body, and spirit.

Here are some of the best ways to cope with traumatizing, tragic news:

Contact your therapist: If you are in recovery, you are likely working a therapist regularly. If you are not, it is critical to talk to someone for some period of time. Working with your therapist more closely can help you investigate what is coming up for you and work through the difficult emotions you might be having. Stay away from social media: Unfortunately, in the wake of a national tragedy there is a lot of conspiracy theory, accusation, and personal opinion. What should be a time of mourning as well as a time of action can turn into political debates and hurtful words. In addition, social media gets flooded with shared videos and stories of the event. Take a break from social media for a week or two and focus your time on other self-care activities. Get in the “middle of the herd”: Many people who have experienced trauma in their lifetimes develop self-defeating behaviors to cope with that trauma. If you also struggle with addictions, eating disorders, or other compulsive behaviors, you should attend you regular meetings and maybe more. Connect with people in the same recovery as you and find support among your peers. It is likely many others are struggling with the same issues. Take care of your physical body: It is common to feel “guilt” about taking care of yourself when so many others are struggling. Trauma, anxiety, depression, and other reactions or somatic- meaning, you experience them in your body as well as your heart, your mind, and your spirit. Pay extra attention to your body and give it what it needs, whether that is asking for hugs, getting a massage, going to yoga, or an extra long hot shower.

The Guest House Ocala is a long term residential treatment program for men and women seeking to recover from traumas, addictions, and other related issues. Call us today for information on our safe, secure, private location, and our trusted programs: