What if Grief was asking you to slow down and listen to your inner world? Now you can as a result of COVID 19, you do have time to listen.
During this time of Social distancing, you now have the time you need. Normally, it’s the outside world where our attention is focused for most of the day, therefore, it’s easy to get distracted. For instance, how often do we take time to listen to ourselves and attend to our inner world?
Right now, the virus has forced us to slow down, it isn’t business as usual, our routines are disrupted. The familiar that gave us security has gone, leaving us feeling untethered and fearful. We are all collectively grieving our world? There are many changes, too many for our minds to grasp and make sense of. When this happens it’s normal to feel afraid.
Similarities to Grief
This is not unlike when a death occurs and the news of a loved one’s death arrives, leaving you feeling in shock and denial even for a short time. Then the need to be busy kicks in. There is so much to do and the funeral to plan including organizing family members coming into town perhaps? With all the arrangements to be made, there is a lot to think about during that time which leaves little time to process the grief you’re experiencing.
Your grief is simply waiting for you to slow down and attend to your jumbled thoughts and emotions.
Why do we resist, usually because when grieving a loss it feels scary, all-consuming, painful, full of uncertainty and then there’s the loss of connection. Instinctively we feel it’s best to avoid if possible. The world has changed and it’s normal for us to feel unequipped to continue. We were never taught how to handle grief well before. Gone are all the tools we discovered that could help to distract ourselves to avoid the negative feelings and emotions we’re feeling.
Essentially, the inner world of thoughts, feelings, and emotions have all been there but simply suppressed. We’ve simply not paid much attention. As children, most of us were taught to discount our emotions. If there was loss we were taught that it can be replaced.
These negative emotions have been replaced with the need to find only happiness. You were taught to discount what you were truly feeling. The message being “be brave put on a happy face” and face the world.
Indeed that’s what most of us are doing, putting on the happy face and pretending all is well.
The Gift of Time
Taking time to grieve is an opportunity for you to begin to attend to your inner world, we, after all, have been gifted this time. What if instead of allowing the fear and panic to take over you asked yourself what are you feeling right now? Take time to journal and as a result, you may discover the feelings quieten leaving you feeling calmer.
When we treat ourselves as we would a small child who expressed that they were scared or felt sad. As a result wouldn’t we help them by acknowledging their feelings as real and finding out what’s behind their fear or sadness?
In general, grief is attempting to get our attention, it wants us to slow down, pay attention to our feelings of sadness, fear or anger. It’s ok to give voice to them by journaling about your experience, speak it out loud, cry even if the tears are there.
The strange thing about doing so is you might just find happiness is there all along. It isn’t in the endless doing or buying or having more. It’s about connection, connecting to that part of you that has been forgotten and ignored. Your inner life.
In conclusion, take time today to do your inner work, after all, we’ve been given a gift, that of a little more time