Learn how to implement specific proven practices that can help you navigate your grief journey.
- Moving through grief is uniquely personal. There's really no one-size-fits-all. And there's no specific allotted time as to when grieving should be over. From her work with thousands of individuals Kristina Rasmussen, author of the book "Second Firsts," and creator of the Life Reentry Model, suggests that it is incorrect to say that grief lasts forever. She believes that the suggestion that it does last forever, robs the possibilities of growth and transformation that can occur in one's life. Instead her view is that grief and life walk right beside each other. And when you are ready to let go of the identity of who you were before the loss, and claim the identity and the life of who you can be going forward. That is when your grief will begin to subside. It has to do with your readiness to lean into and live a life that takes you beyond who you were, and what you have known in the past to something new. Away from the fear of change, or forgetting the old. And away from the fear of facing new hurt as you take risks to embrace a new life. Drawing from her book "Second Firsts," Miss Rasmussen suggest that there are three phases to healthy recovery after loss. First, you exit your old life. In essence your loss forces you to leave the routines you had been living and the life you had known. Second, still immersed in your grief, you simultaneously begin living with the life you just left behind and the one you have yet to live. A gap she calls the waiting room. And third, you begin to experiment with living into your new life. Now as she further suggests, grief and sadness and genuine mourning are different from, and shouldn't be confused with only repetitive thoughts of the past. Or being caught up in your concerns and worries about the future. To move through grief involves experiencing the feelings of sadness, helplessness, anger, disappointment and frustration. And the real mourning that comes with loss. It's important to both feel those feelings and also to understand the impact the loss is having on you now or the impact it has had on your life over time. Journaling, talking with others, and grief recovery groups can help you reflect on the impact and the meaning the loss has held for you. To achieve the third step, regardless of whether it has been months, or years. When you are ready, it involves consciously choosing to build a new life for yourself in the future. It may entail actively noticing your thoughts of grief and loss, and instead choosing to focus them on how you are living in the present, and want to live in the future. And as Miss Rasmussen states, to begin to value life, more than you value grief. Then it involves incrementally engaging in your new life. Developing new habits and choosing to be vulnerable by taking risks or all the small steps to connect with the person you want to be and the future you want to create.
- Understanding difficult feelings
- Defining grief
- Dealing with loss and change
- Supporting grieving colleagues
- Returning to work