Grief is often heard when talking about the death of a loved one. However, grief is applicable to any loss we experience. This might include the loss of a relationship, the loss of a job, the loss of an opportunity or quality of life. Granted, there may be different intensity levels of loss, but the process of grief is the same. For example, a student may not make the cut to for an athletic team. This is a loss of a goal so that student may feel disappointed and/or angry. As such the student will need time to process their feelings and to adjust. On another level you may have a student whose parent died of an illness. Clearly this is a loss that has a more serious impact on the student. Both are losses. The intensity levels are obviously different but both experiences require the grieving process.
There are many emotions that can be associated with grief. The one that most often comes to mind is sadness. However, it is important to note that grief may create many different emotions and all of these emotions are common or so called "normal." Some examples include anger, disappointment, loneliness, frustration, shock, or fatigue. Again these emotions might vary in intensity but some version of them is common. Some of you might be surprised to see anger in that list. Please know anger is very common but often is not discussed openly. I encourage you to embrace any and all emotions you are feeling. You might even feel them at the same time! That is OK! That is good!
Now that you have some awareness of the feelings you are experiencing, you might wonder what to do with them. The answer is simple (but not easy) - feel them! Unfortunately, that is what makes grief so difficult. You have to go through it which means experiencing your emotions. You can't get over, around or under them. As Brene Brown says, you have "to lean into them." Sometimes we need help with this grief process... and it is a process. It takes time. How much time you might ask? There is no right answer. It depends on the level of the experience and the tools we already have to cope with our emotions.
What is important to understand is that grief happens throughout our life and we need to learn how to deal with these loses whether minor disappointments or major life changes. We need to understand the emotions and what to do with those emotions. That is where I can help. Please call me today for your free phone consultation and begin moving through your grief into a better tomorrow!