Secrets for Getting Through Tough Times – Part 1: Grieve Well

We All Need to Learn How to Grieve Well

Last week in my post, What’s My Secret? I shared how important it is to gently allow yourself to accept reality, with the compassionate help of God, yourself and others. That’s not all that helps…we need to learn how to grieve well.

 “But, what do I do with all the feelings?”

One part of the answer lies in helping yourself to “Grieve Well”. This means allowing the feelings to pass through you with the support you need.

I recently had an experience where I let myself experience my grief in the moment. It was very helpful for me, so I wanted to share this with you.

I was at a workshop about a month ago, led by a good friend. It was the first time that I was at a workshop with my colleagues and former students wearing my oxygen. I prepared myself for this experience, and did ok with it.

However, I wasn’t prepared for what happened next…

As my friend Ken went up to speak, I had a tidal wave of grief hit me. I have led workshops for 30 years on a whole variety of topics. I love public speaking and conveying much needed information in practical and helpful ways.

When I saw Ken go up to the podium, it hit me that I wouldn’t be able to do this anymore because of my progressive lung disease and being on supplemental oxygen. I immediately teared-up and thought, “I need to cry right now”. I excused myself and went to the restroom, with my iPad mini in hand.

I cried solid for about 10 minutes, and then I started to type what I was thinking and feeling. Here’s some of what I wrote:

“It’s so hard to be here. He’s doing what I love doing…what I used to do. It is so hard. All the counselors here are preparing for their clients, building their practice. I’m closing mine down.

I love seeing everyone… I want to see if I can stay at this workshop.

Let me use this for good

I want to do public speaking as long as I can. Not only do I believe in the message I have to share, I also enjoy the process of teaching it.

I asked myself a couple of important questions:

“How do I get up to speak without crying, being overwhelmed with grief?”

~ I’ll practice, and share a little of the reality I’m going through

~ I’ll do videos

~ I’ll do shorter talks and sit down when I speak

~ I’ll do Skype / Face time talks

~ I’ll start a blog and communicate that way


Why go to all this effort?

~ I’ve been given something to share that is valuable

~ This is clearly really important to me

~ I’ll do speaking as long as I’m able – just in a different way.


What do I want to communicate?

~ That self-compassion is essential. Why?

~ The relationship you have with yourself affects everything:

(Health, relationships, parenting, marriage, work, spiritual life, emotional health)”

I hope this helps give you a picture of allowing yourself to grieve well, while being supportive of yourself in the process. It sure helps work through tough times, and come to a better place.

Next time I’ll cover more specifics on the grief process and some resources.

Please know that really big losses include lots of these moments of grief Click To Tweet

Working through grief  doesn’t happen one time. I’ve had many, many periods of grief as I’ve been processing through how my life has changed in the last 2 years. I will continue to have lots more.

When grief is unprocessed it can lead to depression, bitterness, being stuck, and a whole lot of other difficult things. Life is full of wonder and joy…and also losses. Let’s learn to grieve well together.

Questions to Ponder…

~ What is your response to the need to “grieve well”

~ What stood out for you in this post?

~ When has allowing grief helped you move forward?

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