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7 Areas Affected by Grief

7 Areas Affected by Grief

Grief Work Begins with Your Grief Inventory for Healing

When you understand these 7 areas your grief can affect, you’ll realize why they say grieving is hard work.  When a loss occurs such as the death of a loved one, it is expected for you to feel pain and experience intense heavy sadness.  However, there are 4 main categories with each one encompassing 2 or 3 areas within the category to give us the 7 areas.

Having this information can help you to understand why you are feeling or what experiencing is normal when a person is grieving.  There are many losses and many changes going on simultaneously.

Its no wonder you can feel so overwhelmed and at times alarmed.  Take out your journal or have a piece of paper handy and markdown any of these listed below that may apply.

Psychological

Emotions

What are you feeling?  Do you have bouts of sadness, increased anger, fearful, guilt/shame what ifs, could/should have?

Thoughts

Difficulty concentrating, forgetful, overwhelmed, confused, thinking the same thought over and over?

Feelings

Do you feel empty inside, in despair, lonely, even helpless, yearning for something but you don’t know what? 

Physical 

Body

Check-in with your body now and see if you are experiencing: low energy, general body pains, tightness in your chest or throat, dizziness, sleeplessness, digestive issues, weight gain or loss, low libido, frequent colds?

Spiritual

Are you religious, do you have strong beliefs, participate in rituals and traditions, have strong connections or are you blaming the church or the God of your understanding for allowing whatever has happened to have happened?

No faith, but have strong beliefs in life, have your own philosophy and spirituality that you can draw comfort from?

Social

Relationship

Do you have good social and family supports? Do you find yourself withdrawing or isolating from them?  Are you less social than you were? Do you prefer your own company now? Is your love relationship becoming strained with more conflicts than before? Fewer friends and family members around due to a move or the family home being sold?

Society’s Attitudes

These are the myths and beliefs, you believe to be true but have never questioned i.e., it just takes time or you never get over grief are just a couple of examples.  Do people avoid you, embarrassed because they don’t know what to say or they feel uncomfortable around you?  You share your story but they are more interested in sharing theirs.  Friends/Family or well-meaning people see you as a project in need of fixing?  They avoid you because you share your story too frequently?

Download your Grief Inventory Chart and check off the ones that are applicable to you.  I am sure you were not aware that a loss, could have such an effect on so many areas of your life?

You probably long for the time when you can tell your story without feeling the pain and have your joy of life return so you can live it to the fullest.  Just know that you can, it is a choice.  Are you ready to make a commitment to yourself and your life?  If, yes, let’s connect so you can begin your journey.

Here is my email [email protected] and looking forward to hearing from you.

Type A Paralysis

Type A Paralysis

I pulled this inspirational card today and it spoke volumes to me.  I’m the perfect example of perfectionism.  So much so I get into perfectionism paralysis!

It was no wonder that when it came my time to grieve, I’d worry if was I doing it right!

“There is no right way, I was told.  Everyone’s journey is unique and we get over our grief when we do”.

Ok, my nursing background kicked in and I thought.  I cannot imagine a doctor telling a patient that.  How helpful would that be to the person with cancer or heart disease?

No, indeed they wouldn’t, instead, they outline the prognosis and the journey they have evidence in seeing for patients with the same diagnosis.  Then they give helpful information for what they can do to help the person heal or suggest potential cures for them.  They are offering them HOPE.

This indeed is what I do, I offer, my clients Hope that they can heal their heartache and move through their grief. I offer helpful information and assist them to plan their own healing journey.

It isn’t about forgetting their loved one, or that they didn’t love them enough if they heal.  It’s about showing them what is possible when they work through their grief with guidance and support.

If you are curious about what grief coaching can do for you, please connect with me.

Healing from your grief is about moving your loved one into your heart and out of your head.

 

Bell’s Let’s Talk campaign is on to

Bell’s Let’s Talk campaign is on to

Yes, Indeed, Let’s Talk

This truly is a brilliant way to have us talking about Mental Health which affects so many and what better way to bring a topic that has been in the shadows for so long out and shed light upon it?

Let’s come together to find ways to help each other cope with depression or schizophrenia and the myriad of other symptoms our Mental Health professionals deal with daily.

One way is to talk about it so that the stigma of having a mental disorder is lessened.  There are so many people suffering because they don’t want to Talk about It out of fear and shame. Time for less judgment.

Clearly more needs to be done but this is a great way to create awareness.

Long-standing Grief & Depression

Another awareness I’d like to create is how grief can add a person to this ever-growing list for those requiring professional help.  Grief if not dealt with can result in severe depression or suicide.  It can sap a person’s life for years after the death occurred.  Grieving is a full body response weakening the immune system and causing health issues.

Not everyone grieving will end up with severe depression or with the symptoms outlined above.  However, that is yet another topic to be discussed and explored.

As science advances unlocking the knowledge to help explain why some mental health issues occur can we then take steps to help prevent the onset.

Mindfulness, breathing, exercise, walking or journaling are some of the tools being used.  Reframing and working on mindset are yet others. Eating healthy and getting more sleep.  Learning to relax and taking days off our electronic devices are just some examples of techniques being implemented or suggested.

Giving our brains a chance to daydream and take time out is another.

However, nothing is ever quite as simplistic and if you feel you grieving and have been for a while please seek professional help.

Regardless of grief, reach out to someone you know and talk to them about what you are noticing.  A simple kindness, someone to speak to can make the world of difference.

 

Please let’s talk……..

 

As a grief coach, I am available. Please Chose life and Chose you because we are all here to make a difference in someone’s life.

 

 

New Beginnings or Endings?

New Beginnings or Endings?

Happy New Year to You!

What exactly does that mean, if you are grieving it can be like nails to a chalkboard.  How can you be happy you think when your world is no longer the same without your loved one?

Perhaps you can look upon this moment, this year in a different light it’s a New Year albeit without the one you love.  It is an opportunity for you to create or chose what you’d like to experience. It is ripe with new beginnings and infinite possibilities awaiting you to try.

Hard to be Happy

Indeed when you are in mourning it is difficult to feel or even want to be happy.  Especially with your mind and thoughts being with the person you have lost.  You’re grieving.

Despite where you are, you can find moments here to feel and be happy.  Grieving is such heavy energy no wonder we find it hard to pull away from it.   However, the body does need to find balance even for a little while.  It is helpful to find something different to do or focus on.  Even if you don’t want to give it a try.  Believe me it can help. This is called daily action

Doing Something Different

With each daily action, your mind is involved in other things and your focus shifts away from your grief.  This doesn’t happen overnight.  If however you are willing to lay down your grief for a while it can help to ease your pain.

This doesn’t mean leaving your loved one behind.  It is the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that arise in grieving and its these you leave behind if you are willing?

New Beginnings

I love the opportunity new beginning bring.  As a child after a period of being naughty, I was given space to think about my behaviour.  When ready, I’d leave my room and mum and I would talk about it.  After a while, she would suggest I receive a “clean page” where I could begin again being a better person.

I would relish in this thought and savor the possibilities of keeping the page clean!  Well until next time.

Did my love of new beginnings, a clean slate begin there, who knows?  Today, they are my passions and I love guiding my clients to find their new beginnings.  This starts with a shift in mindset and then delving into the work to find themselves.  The next stage is about planning and discovering their clean page for themselves.

A New On-line Program

AI have created a program online, that will teach you just that month by month.  It is a closed group where you will receive support from the group as well as myself.

Did I keep the page clean – well possibly for a little while, mum was always ready to grant a new one.  So you see it is never too late for you to begin your new beginnings and transformation.

If you’re unsure how to – why not email me and let’s have a conversation?  [email protected]

My Gift To You

My Gift To You

Holiday Season is here – Time to be of Good Cheer

Tis the season…….  Whether you are grieving or not, this time of year can be hard on the most resilient!

How many of us start off the season, with hearts full of joy and expectations that this year will be the best one ever?

The images in our heads are made up of nostalgia perhaps for Christmas long ago.  Our childhood memories of how our Christmas times were filled with magic and fun.  How different it can be when we become the adults?  There is so much pressure we place on everything being perfect.

The Hollywood image of happy families delighting in their gifts and being together in a community.  Or images of the future where we will get it right.  What does “getting” it right even mean?

Looking for the Perfect Gift?

To me, it isn’t about the perfect present, although it can make the heart happy.  For many, the whole event can be disappointing why because of the expectations.  The expectations we put on ourselves, the day itself or it may be unmet expectation of our friends and family.

While many of us look forward to the magic of Christmas; at times we forget what it truly is about.  Connection and celebrating with our loved ones.

That is why it is so difficult for those of you grieving in your year of 1st.   The loss of connection to your loved one will make it more emotionally difficult to navigate.

When you add the loss and the normal pressures we put upon ourselves at Christmas time, it is no wonder most grieving a loss want to hibernate.  It is all too much.

The Perfect Solution for all – Gratitude

There is a simple solution for all of us to adopt during the holidays and that is the practice of gratitude for what is in our lives.  Go within to find it.  It isn’t outside of us.  I believe what we are looking for is not perfection, bigger or better gifts, but a sense of belonging, connection, and love.  Practicing gratitude can bring to you the feeling I think we are looking for.

When you can feel that deep gratitude from within you can infuse it into your life and everything you do.  It is a much different energy, it is one of kindness and love.  It truly does help to release those expectations that each of us carry.

I am so grateful to you for remaining on my list so that you can receive nuggets that I sincerely hope help you. Wishing for you, peace, understanding and a heartful full of the spirit of love.

Our Eulogy to Mum

Our Eulogy to Mum

Elizabeth Miller Purdon delighted all who knew or met her. For those who knew her well could say looking back over her long life, that she had loved, she had made a difference and she mattered. She lived by simple rules and lived her life by example.

These two guided her:

“If you don’t have anything nice to say then don’t say it”

“Put a smile on your face, no one wants your troubles for they have plenty of their own”

True Grit

She rarely complained about the life she had had nor as her health slipped in her advanced years.  Instead, she lifted her spirits and those around her with her cheery disposition. I believe that is why she was so loved. She was a fighter, resilient, and a warrior woman but most of all was her big heart.

Family was so important to her and she strove to give her “girls” everything she had not. Mum did have a big family until the age of 6. Her mum died, her dad unable to cope with the two youngest, mum and her brother Jimmy discovered an orphanage was to became their home. She did lose touch with her brother but he did come to find her along with his best friend. The best friend later became our Dad.

The Past Remained There

Mum never spoke about her past, preferring to keep it locked away in her own personal vault. Her past being too awful to share so she didn’t. She could have become angry and bitter instead she chose to be happy and to share her big heart and not close it down.

She lived “the law of attraction” long before it was known. If you want something you have to give it to another first. She became a children’s nurse and loved the sick unwanted children in her care, and they loved her back.

It’s Never Too Late

Mum was fiercely independent and went out to work at a time when women were considered homemakers. She would return to school, teaching us “that it is never too late”. Her new career ended after many years when the car industry collapsed in Coventry but that didn’t deter her, she found a new passion.

She turned her love of children, telling stories and crafts into a new position – it was to help single mums with young children to sew and learn to interact with their children.  Mum was even featured on the BBC telling her beloved stories to children as they acted it out with the characters from the book she had lovingly made.

Another Country and New Life

Mum was selected to come to Canada as a young child but fate intervened and she never did get to go but it had stirred a longing in her heart. This longing would be passed onto me for when I came to Canada the restlessness I had always felt inside had gone. Ever courageous, mum and dad immigrated to Ottawa after dad retired.

They were always hopeful my sister and her family would join us but circumstances intervened and that didn’t happen. She never said if she regretted that decision but I know it was hard for them both to have their children in different continents.

Memory Loss Takes Over

As she advanced into older age she could be heard telling anyone that

“She had been there, done that I wrote the book.”

Mum also claimed other’s accolades as her own. Again, saying

“She taught them everything she knew.”

These two would become her social graces as she slipped more and more into Alzheimer’s. Mum was amazingly good at covering up her memory deficits and only those close to her would know.  She would ask about each grandchild and we would patiently and lovingly answer her questions over and over.

“How is their love life” she would ask us.  However, there were times when she would ask the person themselves and at times this didn’t always go down well.

Using Age to Her Advantage

If she forgot something or couldn’t do it, she would say “I’m nearly 90 you know”.

Mum drove us all crazy with her refusal to wear her hearing aids and missed out on many conversations. It was sad watching her world became ever smaller. She did delight us and the staff by actually agreeing to wear them and for about two weeks life was pretty good until the hearing aids went missing. Never to be found!

Holding Hand after 60’s Years

Mum and dad could be seen walking to the mall hand in hand – everyone remarked “how sweet” mum would reply, “no, not at all,  it was necessary – we hold each other up”. When Dad died, mum agreed to using a walking stick. How about a walker we would suggest. “Oh, no they were for old people”.

Mum lived her life and when met with challenges she accepted them with grace and turned them around.

End of an Era

The good Lord as she called her maker came to get her on Halloween, a perfect time. A time for children, treats and fun – which is what she was all about.

She was the heart and the pull to home. This will be felt no more. No more tales to tell her grandchildren, no more “hows your love life” heard.

The little women with a big heart is now silent. We will all miss you mum and nan.

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