6 Ways to Find Support on a Journey of Grief
There is no greater transition than the kind that the journey of grief pushes you into. It doesn’t matter if it’s a death, a loss of a job, the end of a relationship, the loss of a dream—grief can stop you in your tracks.
I would love to be able to tell you that if your spiritual practice was consistent enough or that your Spirit connection was strong enough that you wouldn’t have to walk alongside of grief, but it simply isn’t true. There is no intuitive tool to bypass this emotion. It’s something we all will or have experienced.
It’s a part of the human journey.
Having walked alongside grief a lot this past year, I can share a few of the things that have helped me find my center time and again:
- Breath Awareness. I know it sounds cliche, but when feeling grief intensely, focusing on breath can make it seem more bearable.
- Support Systems. Having a support system can help—and therapy is included in that. Your friends and family can support you so far and having an outside source or a different kind of support can help you the rest of the way.
- Letting Go. This isn’t about forcing yourself to let go. It’s about getting clear on what you have control over and what you don’t. Then giving yourself space and time to figure out what you want to do about the things you can control and letting go of the things you can’t.
- My Spiritual Practice. Like I said above, this doesn’t bypass the grief, but having a solid spiritual practice can help you feel less alone and give you purpose when you so desperately need it.
- Finding Joy. It may seem like grief and joy couldn’t possibly live together, but I’ve discovered that they do. You may need to remind yourself to go out of the way to create joy, choose joy, find joy in as much as you possibly can. Also, having something planned that brings you joy in the future can give you a much needed boost on the harder days.
- Everyday Miracles. Grief can be a really heavy burden to carry. Sometimes, finding a focus point to remind yourself that magic still exists helps with that burden. For example, I chose Miracles as my word for the year. That anchor gives me perspective and makes me search out the magic that still exists in life. This year, in addition to a gratitude list, I’ve kept a daily miracle list. Some days have pretty fantastical stuff on them—like gravity. I mean, seriously, it’s a miracle (and science LOL) that we all stay on the surface of Earth. Or humming birds—their eggs are so tiny! How do they even survive?!? And then more serious things like the miracle of actually meeting my husband in the first place (that’s a story!) or the miracle that is my daughter.
Grief is like fire. It can be highly destructive, but also highly transformative. I’ve been in its flames for the last two years and it’s been tough, but my life has transformed beyond what I could imagine. I know myself and those around me so much better. Doors have slammed shut, but others have opened unexpectedly.
The one thing I do know to be true is that, in the hardest of times, my strong relationship with Spirit and my higher self have supported me in ways that are truly astonishing.
P.S. One of my favorite books on grief is by my friend, Jeanne Bundy. It’s called Beyond Goodbye: Living in the Experience of Loss. You can check it out here.
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