There are moments in life that hammer home the idea of what’s truly important. Moments that immediately affect your perspective, and alter your sentiment. Often times, these moments result in the loss of someone in your life, be it through death, hardship, relocation, betrayal, or something else. But loss can be experienced in a variety of other ways, as well.
Last month, I shared the harrowing experience that occurred before me and some friends this past New Year’s Eve. We talked about it on the Season Two opener of the White Collar Therapy Show, and it turns out that it was a moment that also resonated with many of our listeners.
In this episode, we circle back around to discuss even further, since grief is such a common theme for so many of us. While initially grief seems like a solely personal issue, truth is that it isn’t something you can compartmentalize.
This sense of loss and the far reaching impacts it has isn’t limited to only physical loss such as death. It can be the loss of a relationship, a job, an opportunity that slips through your fingers.
Loss is loss. And grief accompanies loss in many forms.
People deal with loss and grief in different ways. One person shoves it down and distracts themselves while another waits for time to heal their wounds. But does time always heal?
It’s not about finding the right or wrong way. It’s about learning what’s healthy for you and how to keep that grief from manifesting as problems in other areas of your life.
It’s one thing to acknowledge this grief or sense of loss, but it’s another to come up with ways to actually deal with it. My colleague and co-host Robb Holman has some great insights and practical ways for people to digest, absorb, and process these events.
Full video Replay
3 Tips for Coping with Loss
Take Your Time – Time for personal reflection is important, especially at times like this. Robb sets this tip as number one because it’s the foundation of moving forward.
“I think in order to move forward,” he says, “Sometimes we’ve got to be willing to actually take a step back in a time of reflection of what that person or that season or that thing ruined meant to us meant for us and come to terms with it.”
Reach Out – Grief can easily leave us feeling alone and isolated. This is why community is so important when coping and dealing with an event that brings grief washing over us.
“There has to be a person we can begin to navigate through these … shifting waters and these waves in the sea,” Robb says. “Just having a person or two in our life can quiet the storm a little bit. They’re going to be thinking through a little more objectively. They’re going to be that listening ear. They’re going to be that shoulder to cry on.”
Exchange Why for What – Asking “Why?” in a situation of grief is a normal human reaction. It’s a process that’s important in its own way, but not something you want to get hung up on.
The honest answer is that sometimes there is no why. So swap out that “Why?” for “What?”
What now? What next? What can I do to honor this loss without derailing my own life?
Saying goodbye is a part of life. Sometimes it happens suddenly and a person is taken from us. Other times it happens slowly as we watch a relationships shift, dissolve or simply fall away.
Missed opportunities, job loss, that spark of inspiration that fizzled and died before you had a chance to capitalize on it – loss comes in many forms, at many times and sometimes from multiple directions at once.
Understanding how grief from these losses affects us is the first step, not only in healing that pain, but also in finding ways to use it.
The loss of a job often leads to a better career opportunity. The loss of a close relationship drives home how precious other relationships are. Losing a loved one, well, that makes us all hold tighter on to those close to us.
Learning to grow from a loss isn’t about forgetting the person or the event – it’s about owning it, learning from it, moving on more thoughtfully, becoming stronger, and gaining clarity.
About White Collar Therapy
The podcast and video featured in this post come from The White Collar Therapy Show with Robb and Ryan, a bi-weekly live stream featured here on AutoConversion that centers around two friends who meet for coffee every other week to catch up on each others’ personal and professional lives.
For more information about the show, follow this link.