Dealing with loss, no matter what kind, isn’t easy. Even if you haven’t experienced a death of a loved one, you may experience grief. Grief arises at the death of a person, but also at the death or loss of such things as a home or relationship or job. You might grieve the life you once had. Or the loss of the plans and life you had anticipated having in the future.
In this time of such loss and uncertainty, it’s important to take the time to process the grief we feel. Here are 4 steps to support you in beginning.
1. Allow your emotions to arise and feel what you’re feeling. So often we don’t allow our feelings to be felt. We push them down. We ignore them. We tell ourselves we shouldn’t feel that way. Then they’re bottled up inside to be released in a tidal wave later. You’ll feel better and able to move forward if you let your feelings rise and be experienced.
“Grief is like the ocean; it comes on waves ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” – Vicki Harrison
2. Connect with others. In the time of a pandemic and social distancing, this is more difficult to achieve but sometimes all that is needed is a connection on the phone or a videocall or even a cup of tea or walk at a distance.
“Deep grief sometimes is almost like a specific location, a coordinate on a map of time. When you are standing in that forest of sorrow, you cannot imagine that you could ever find your way to a better place. But if someone can assure you that they themselves have stood in that same place, and now have moved on, sometimes this will bring hope.”
– Elizabeth Gilbert
3. Ask for divine support. I like to use this practice and you may find it supportive too. Take a deep breath, close your eyes and listen to the song, “Shine the Light”.
Ask the Divine to shine a light on your grief and to give you guidance on how to move forward. When the song is finished, keep your eyes closed and sit in silence listening for any divine guidance.
4. Find meaning in the experience. An important milestone of processing your grief is when you’re able to emerge from the grief and find meaning within the loss that occurred. It doesn’t have to be a grand, philosophical idea. Even small moments help. That moment when you notice Mother Earth benefiting from less traffic and pollution during the pandemic. The recognition of the loving, elderly couple so determined to leave their life together on this plane on their own terms, not on someone else’s.