Two Bad Habits

As widows our energy is already low and so I want to warn you about two bad habits that we often take on after the death of our husbands.

The first bad habit is irresponsible television watching.  I suggest that you skip the late night news because you don’t need to take in all that negative news just before you try to go to sleep.

Never watch shows that involve sexual exploitation or violence against women as it can cause you to be fearful now that you are on your own.  There is no reason to watch a show that demeans or diminishes another woman.  Instead, watch shows that encourage and inspire as much as they entertain.  Shows that leave us feeling better about ourselves, and helps us to see the world in a better light, will give us some positive energy and we really need that when grieving.

What we dwell on has a direct effect on how we view life, so please pay attention to what you absorb hour upon hour through your T.V.  Stop and ask yourself: “What do I really want – positive or negative energy and is my T.V. providing it for me?”

I’ve learned to grieve in a healthy way.  I have had to be extremely focused on using my time in a positive way, and I have found “YouTube” to be a more targeted way to get what I needed.  Is your T.V. time lining up with what you need and want?

The second bad habit is anxiety shopping and I really fell hard into this habit after Donnie died. I have worked hard on all my bad habits, but even after almost fifteen years I still do anxiety shopping.

Shopping gives me something to do outside of my empty home, it soothes me when I am stressed.  But it’s only temporarily helpful and when I’m not careful it leaves me with less cash and more stuff then I really need.

So I created a plan that works for me:  When I’m stressed, lonely or feeling lost I focus on all the things I already have by writing in my journal.  I take a walk around my home, looking through my closets and dressers to see all the stuff I already don’t use.  I then take some time to toss or donate a few more items and that keeps me busy so I don’t go anxiety shopping.

One last tip, if I really need to get out, I shop only with $20.00 in cash, no debit or credit cards so that I limit the stuff I buy.  I still get out and release my negative energy and loneliness, but it isn’t hurting my bank account like it used to.  Or I spend some time online at Amazon filling up my shopping cart and then deleting it all.

These are only two of the many bad habits that widows like me get into.  Be aware of your bad habits and do what works best for you.

Mary Francis, The Sisterhood of Widows

7 Responses

  1. Virginia
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    I binge Netflix and love historical fiction – stay away from the shopping but eating I am binging.
    Thanks for your helpful tips 🙂

  2. Carol Delerme
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    OMG! You absolutely pegged me on bad habit #1 !!! Part of my sadness after two years of loss of my husband of nearly 46 years, is this awful feeling of vulnerability. Living in South Florida, it’s constant reports of car jackings, muggings, assaults, etc. on the local news stations. On the national news platforms is the depressing state of our democracy which is under constant attack. I miss the evening activities like movie/dinner dates and the evening walks and concerts on the beach that we did for 17 years.

    I have recently discovered the series, Grace and Frankie (Jane Fonda, Lily Tomlin). I have not been one to follow television programming per say, except back in the 70s, but this program has given me some chuckles because many of the topics are so relatable for those of us in the “Third Act” (Jane Fonda, TED Talk) of our lives. And this Sisterhood has been a life line… Thank you Mary.

  3. Sue
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    Wow, I went crazy after my husband died buying new clothes. I felt I needed to update my look. I can see now I was trying to fill the loneliness.

  4. Gay Roberts
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    I was my husbands caregiver for 4 yrs. he passed with vascular dementia, I’m continuing to care for our adult 46 year old handicapped daughter who is in a wheelchair. I buy a lot on line. I too do stress shopping. I did buy paint to do my porch and plan to paint my house inside. I will be 71 Sunday and am trying to do things myself to save money. It will keep me off my phone. I do not watch TV at night. I like it quiet. I pray, listen to music . I really appreciate sisterhoodofwidows. I need it!

    • Carol Pierre-Delerme
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      Wishing you strength to keep you going. You are remarkable…

  5. Sherry
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    I have been doing both since my hubs died a little over a year ago. I thought really hard about that recently and I am retiring very soon. I decided the first year of my retirement I will be focused on improving my health. So I am slowly learning Qiqong and reading alot about nutrition.. I want to lose weight, get stronger and have more energy. I am also going to focus on decluttering my home and fixing it up. If you fail to plan you plan to fail. So hopefully having this will get my focus on the right things.

  6. Karen Achatz
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    I love this advice. I live in Las Vegas, so well, you know. I will use this advice when I am out. Thank you! Be well. You are doing great things!

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