A great success begins with doing what you already know how to do and doing it when you tell yourself to do it. So many of us will admit that we know what to do to solve some of our problems. Actually doing it can be the challenge. The same can be said about how we experience our grief story.
Everyone’s Grief Story is their own
The way your grief story unfolds is unique to you. Something that can be helpful is creating your own “treatment plan” and what works for YOU. Crying, depression, intense work ethic and apathy are just a few of the many ways you may react to your grief.
Today I am going to share some of the ways I created my own “treatment plan” that relates to my needs and my grief story. The goal is to show you how I got to mine and why it works for me, while helping you arrange your own.
It cannot be said enough; we all experience grief uniquely. The truth is that your own grief story can and will change day to day and month to month. Some days you may feel full of hope and motivation and the next that feeling of being pulled under by the waves of grief washes over you.
Planning out the “Perfect” Day
The question I ask myself is what do I need to do to have the “perfect” day. No matter where I am in my grief story, I know that I have the tools to make my days the best it possibly can be, everyday. Having a perfect day doesn’t mean I won’t feel sad or things won’t go wrong. It means that I will prep myself and respond in the healthiest way I know how.
Template to Tell Your Grief Story
Step 1: Gathering or catching your thoughts and feelings first thing in the morning.
As soon as I wake up I dig into my senses and feel what I am feeling both physically and mentally. Next, I feel my body and acknowledge any tiredness, aches and pains. Then I dig into my mindset and pull out my excitement, fears and anxieties for the day ahead.
Step 2: Acknowledge those “feelings” and tell yourself the truth about them.
Recognizing which of those thoughts or feelings are toxic is very important to your mental health. If you are having a hard time deciphering what is toxic and what is healthy, include a therapist or a trusted loved one on this step. As you begin to be truthful about your feelings follow through with statements such as this. “I acknowledge I am feeling anxious about the day ahead but I know that I am strong and can handle anything that comes my way.”
Step 3: Start your day with thanksgiving.
An important piece of healing in your grief story is to remember what you have instead of focusing on what you have lost. I heard a quote that says, “imagine waking up tomorrow with only the things you were grateful for today.” It created a new way of living for me. Everyday being thankful for what you have. Even when it feels as though there is nothing to be thankful for, there always is. Even being thankful for your struggles can bring a new perspective to every day.
Step 4: Healthy and active lifestyle.
I’ve eaten my veggies. I’ve moved my body. This is when I feel most energized and balanced. Whether it is a competitive cross fit workout or a power walk through the neighborhood, physical activity gets those endorphins flowing along with a side of hope for the future. What do you do to get moving?
Step 5: Finding your WHY?
Every grief story has it’s why and the answer is often love. I grieve because I loved. You must also find the why for your life. That “why” often goes back to love once again. What or who makes you tick. Why is it important that you wake up each day and live your best life. It could be in honor of the ones you lost. Children, grandchildren, the legacy that you want to leave.
Now Get going on your Grief Story
Each of these five steps and how you create your own plan will significantly affect your grief story. In each of the steps I challenge you to ask yourself what you value and how you would play out each one.
Use these five steps as a starting point on the path your grief story will take. Remember I am not a doctor, these are things that I have discovered over years that are a starting point for me. If you are struggling to find the answers for yourself, seek out support. There are so many amazing counselors, therapists and grief support groups that can help you along the way.