Twenty-Two Lessons on Loss
When we suffer loss, we suffer because of the value of the thing or person we lost. It doesn’t matter when our loss happens, or where it happens. For this week’s episode, Loss is Not a Taboo Word, I talk in depth about ways of handling loss, from accepting what you feel to finding affirmation. Here are my twenty-two ways of handling loss:
1. You’ll survive because you’re alive.
As a nurse, it’s my job to give patients the medicine, nutrition and support to stay alive and continue healing. It’s the same for you and me. You’ll get better with time. Remember that nature, the universe, and God are on your side.
2. If you need help, get help!
When experiencing loss, it can be hard sometimes to avoid life-threatening behaviors or actions. Asking for help is bravery. It is the bravery that comes from self love. Get help if you’re feeling undone, no longer in control of your emotion, if you have a history of mental health issues, substance abuse, or if you have no one to turn to.
3. Acknowledge the loss you suffered.
It can be frightening not knowing what will happen when you accept and face the loss. But it’s essential to acknowledge the loss in order to start recovering. It happened to you. Accept it. It may suck, but you’re built and made to survive.
4. You are not alone.
Loss is a part of life and everyone has experienced or will experience loss at some point in their lives. Your task is to make a safe, loving and healthy journey from loss, to recovery, to healing, to growing, to thriving and to becoming profound. You have 7.6 billion other people on Earth rooting for you, because they too have suffered, are suffering, or will suffer loss, just like you.
5. It’s okay to feel… or not feel anything.
You may feel pain, emptiness, falling into a bottomless abyss, stuck in slow motion, frozen, vulnerable, powerless, numb… Feel these emotions, but don’t dwell on them. This is what I call Stagnation of Emotion. Give your mind and body what it needs to heal. Give your spirit what it needs to heal you.
6. Become one with your pain.
Don’t be afraid of pain. You can’t run away from it or cover it up. You can only face it head-on. Pain is a sign post to something you need to pay attention to and love more. Pain awakens you, it engages you, enlightens you, and even educates you sometimes to care more and feel more.
7. You are not fine… you’re doing great.
Your ego may take a beating and drag your body and mind with it, but you’re more than just your body and mind. You’re more than your circumstances. Nature supports healing, growth, and expansion... nature is your ally. You cannot be down for long if you are open to healing and open to nature. How does one become open to nature? Embrace love.
8. Give your body and mind what it needs to heal: space and time.
Self love is giving yourself time and space that you need to feel. Take space from painful or negative experience or triggers. Take time for your healing to progress to growth and thriving. Bear in mind that time and space will never erase loss, but your body and mind will heal over time, given the space they need.
9. Manage your expectations.
Healing is not a linear graph. It’s more like daily or weekly ups and downs, but when you look back you will notice a steady trend of growth. However, be sure to never compete or compare with anyone. When you compete, you are not creating. And when you're not creating, you're not one with nature. When you compare, you will despair.
10. Tomorrow will always come.
The sun will rise eventually. The big question is whether you will rise with the sun and leave behind the woes of yesterday or stay stuck in yesterday and refuse to acknowledge the present and all its beautiful gifts. My plea is for you to rise. My plea is for you to stay present.
11. Breathe. Then Breathe again. And again, and again and again…
Start with a deep breath… inhale and feel the air coursing through your nostrils to your lungs, enriching your blood with nutrients… nutrients that provide fuel for your body to heal. Now release the carbon dioxide from your lungs and let it carry out the physical and mental tension, the emotional pain and the hurt. Let it go, release your pain. Place your palm on your chest and feel your heart beating. It’s beating! You’re alive! You’ll survive, you’ll recover, you’ll heal, you’ll grow, you’ll thrive, and you’ll become profound.
12. Get lots of rest and then some more.
Sleep more and learn how to pace yourself. Be gentle with your body and mind. Be open to your spirit. No rush, remember that loss doesn’t follow space and time. It doesn't matter where the loss happened, or what time it happened, it hurts physically and emotionally nonetheless. Don’t get into anything emotionally draining. Healing and growth happen during rest.
13. Maintain a schedule of things that are comforting.
Go back to the basics. Sleep, wake, pray/meditate, walk the dog, water the flowers, cook, eat, drink water, smell the flowers, get a hug or hug yourself, smile, listen to music… Healing will not happen in chaos. Nature likes order. Have your life in order. Keep a journal.
14. Keep difficult decisions to a minimum.
Let your mind rest, and delegate decisions if you can! You can find virtual assistance if you don't have any friends, relatives or colleagues that can help you.
15. It’s okay to be flawed or forgetful.
It's okay to be silly or goofy. It's okay to forget your keys sometimes, misplace stuff. I remember when I suffered loss, once or twice I had my glasses on and I was looking for them. It's okay to misspell or to forget names. Your brain is asking for space and time to rest. Be kind, loving and giving with yourself, especially when you’re healing.
16. If you are not getting the love or comforting you need, ask for it.
People are not mind readers. Asking is bravery. Ask for support and seek connection. Use social media for genuine connection, not to avoid your pain or put off your healing.
17. Never underestimate the power of physical connection.
Oftentimes a pat on the back, holding hands, a hug, or even getting a massage from someone you trust or a professional masseuse can help with the pain. From my experience as a registered nurse, touch with a patient's consent can be as reassuring and therapeutic as support and encouragement. I’ve held many hands, giving love and courage to the sick and the dying and have discovered that this simple act of human connection is immeasurable.
18. Surround yourself with living things.
When you’ve suffered loss and are recovering, surviving, healing or growing, be sure to have things around you with a life force in them—people, pets, animals, birds, insects, plants, or even natural forces such as running or moving water or a view of the sunrise and sunset.
19. Find Affirmations that support your recovery, healing, growth, thriving and becoming profound.
You can speak it existence or wear it into your future. The products from my online store at http://www.the-profound-store.myshopify.com or at www.lostandprofoundtv.org/shopnow are tailored for you to wear you affirmation. I encourage you to check it out.
20. I don’t like negatives, so instead of "never do this or that," I'll say:
Appreciate the power of positivity. Appreciate the power of positive thinking and positive speaking—you are what you think and you are what you say. Speak healing into your life. Speak growth into your life. Speak thriving into your life. Think positively and let your actions match with what you think and say. If you must act on your anger, turn it outwards to nature... yell into the open air or sky. Humans and animals cannot take your anger or rage and do not deserve it. Save them from your rage.
21. Your healing is closer than you know.
Oftentimes when people decide to give up, they are so close to their healing, growth, thriving or success. If only you can be open to your spirit, you will see... If only you can open your mind, you will hear... if only you can open your heart, you will love again.
22. Life has thorns, but it’s also a rose.
When you look at your situation, it's up to you to either see roses with thorns or thorns with roses. All I ask is that you live so you may see the roses, so you may heal, so you may grow, and so you may thrive. All I ask is that you become profound.
Become Profound. Stay Profound.
Check out the full episode for more detailed thoughts on how to get through loss. And stay tuned for next week's episode!