Dealing with Grief and Loss
Have you recently lost a loved one, a job, a relationship, a friend or a pet? Are you feeling overwhelming sadness, grief, loss, anger, hurt, guilt or any other emotions? Do these emotions stop you or hold you back from moving forward and having a life you desire?
What are Grief and Loss?
Grief and loss are emotions just like anger and fear are emotions. Grieving is a natural human process and it is important that we allow ourselves to see and feel grief after a loss. People can feel grief and loss after losing a loved one, a pet, a friend, a job, after a relationship break up, when they move interstate or overseas and lose their friends and/or their sense of identity, as a result of a natural disaster, or any time any relationship, project or situation ends or concludes. In these situations it is appropriate for us to feel a range of emotions, including grief and loss.
The degree of grieving can vary depending on the situation and the person. At the same time, if we find ourselves feeling overwhelming grief or loss, it is a sign that these emotions are unresolved and they may prevent us from fully living our lives and doing the things we desire. The grieving process can be as short or as long as we feel we need. Generally, the grieving process is shorter if we are complete with the person that has left us, passed away or with the situation that has happened. So if we have the opportunity to say or express what is on our mind, how we feel and there is nothing left unsaid, then we are totally complete with the person or situation. Therefore, it is important that we allow ourselves the time and space to fully express our grief and loss.
Are you allowing yourself to grieve?
If we do not allow ourselves sufficient time to grieve and instead suppress our emotions and soldier on as if all is well, this can create other challenges, including lack of sleep, stress, frustration, feeling overly responsible, guilt and can even result in ill health. Because any time we do not listen to our emotions and suppress them, we risk creating ill health. Also, by suppressing our emotions, we are storing them at the unconscious level for them to come up even bigger at a later time.
Our beliefs can also impact on the degree to which we grieve. For example, if we have a belief that it is not OK to express our emotions or if we were brought up not to grieve, these beliefs can prevent us from giving ourselves permission to grieve. It is important that there is a supportive environment for those experiencing grief or loss, that we show them empathy and understanding and that they are encouraged and given an opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings with others.
While challenging, dealing with grief and loss can be a gentle journey when we allow ourselves to express our emotions and when we surround ourselves with supportive people. This will assist us to preserve our health and wellbeing and also refocus on living our life.
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