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Grief and its effect on you.....

Grief can impact you for many reasons, the lost of someone close, the loss of a pet, a miscarriage, it can impact you even when you are involved in an accident or develop an illness or disease. It can happen when you have to give up something you love doing, like a sport or hobby; and can be brought on by pain and suffering or the breakdown of a relationship. By the loss of a job or income, even feeling like a failure.



Have you ever said to yourself “Why me?” then you have had to deal with grief. This is the first stage of grief, you feel victimised, but there are 5 more phases to attend to. There is a different timespan for each phase for each person, some will never get through and will grieve for years. Unless you identify that you are grieving and start to help yourself.


The next phase is to feel anger, hostility and resentment to someone, or something involved in the process. Anger towards a family member that didn’t help out when you needed it, resentment that it’s you and not someone else. Hostility to someone that gave you duff (bad) information. Even to yourself for letting the event occur or not doing more to help.


It is really important to understand you are in this process and that you need to work through it, during phase two you need to let the anger out, SHOUT, SCREAM, let those emotions out. It might benefit you to talk to someone, such as a counsellor or therapist, even someone in your circle that may help. If your finances can’t stretch to that then find a good book or podcast about grief and take a listen, they can give you ideas of places to explore to help you pass into the next phase. Maybe organise to meet up with someone for a cup of tea.


Phase 3 is frustration. With yourself and with others, you will take it out on others even when it’s not their fault. But at least you have moved on to the next phase. You need to start taking care of yourself and doing things that make you smile or laugh and bring joy into your day. It’s important that your mind and body is helped through the grief process. Maybe try something new, go out for a walk, be at one with nature to allow your body to start to heal. Get away from everyone, there are so many things that you could do, maybe a meditation, or something calming like yoga, Tai Chi, Chi Qong. You might need to build up a sweat and go for a bike ride, swim or run. It’s important to take yourself out of the current mindset you are in.


So what’s next? Giving up, resignation, surrendering. All have different scenarios. When we consider the word resigning, it’s not in the same context as resigning from your job, that will give you instant relief and excitement. But as part of the grief process, you can’t escape it, it’s overpowering, your every thought is about what you are grieving over. You may not have enough information and are stuck unable to get free, feeling like you are surrounded by quick sand. What you do now is important, it can be a life and death situation depending on what you are grieving.


You must be allowed to have time for yourself, you may have to consider your work/life balance, even your relationships, you need to put yourself first, get help from family members and friends, if you can. Remember you are not alone, someone else has been through the same thing you are going through. Reach out. You must tell them how you feel, it will help them to understand where you are and what they can do for you. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, if you don’t it will be your downfall. You shouldn’t have to deal with it alone. If people offer help, don’t block them, it is important to allow yourself to fail, to cry, to blub, to scream and shout, to shake uncontrollably.


Don’t imagine that you are the first person to have ever gone through this. But you don’t have to tell everyone, choose which friends you tell wisely.


So, the next stage is officially the worst stage “Despair and helplessness” You see no way out. It’s at this phase people take their own life or the illness they have takes it for them. If you have already started to work on yourself and have seeked guidance from other sources, you might not stay in this phase long. There are so many things that cause grief, it’s difficult to give guidance on your specifics, but say you have a disease or illness, you might want to seek alternative advice.


Think about changing your diet, adding supplements, what you suffer from may have a specific deficiency that you may need help working out. Don’t go it alone, there is someone out there that has done the same journey and they will want to help you. If you can get to the next phase then you have been through grief and are coming out the other side. It is important to consider change in your life. Are you critical to yourself, then you must learn to stop, catch yourself being critical and be kind to yourself, change your thinking, change your wording. Consider that you need to forgive (even yourself!), release resentment, understand what triggers you and how to release these triggers.


The final phase is Acceptance. You have accepted “it” for what it is, you then see peace, calmness and meaning. Is it possible that you have taken your existence for granted? This is all about you, do not deviate from your journey, everyone else comes second during this journey, you have to do what you need to do, not what others want you to do.


Let me assure you that you are not alone, everyone has or will go on this journey, some floating effortlessly through it, others will take years. Personally I too have been on this journey and it has taken a lot of hard work, but I have found the most amazing person buried underneath. I truly love her now and would do absolutely anything for her. She always takes precedent in my life, but I have more love to give and quite a lot of advice.


I write this article as a person who has grieved, I have been through each of these steps and it took me about a year to reach acceptance. Remember, we are all different, but you do need to work on it. Grief comes easily but is like an unwelcome guest, who will try to outstay their welcome.


Disclaimer:

This article isn’t written to replace medical advice but can be used alongside it. Please consult your medical practitioner. If you require medication, speak to your healthcare provider. Please note this is my opinion based on the research I have done on this for me. I would also advise that you listen to your body and keep a journal of your journey through this, it really does help as you will start to identify patterns of behaviour. Good Luck!



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