EP:175 Three Ways To Cope With Grief To Live Courageously

In today’s world, you might feel that you are constantly fed with ways to level up and be brave.

This advancement is engrained in our society and living up to this level of advancement could feel like you are carrying around the weight of expectations.

What if I told you that the key to reaching these higher, more advanced levels was actually to revisit all the situations where you felt pain? Only when we take the time to be with our pain and properly grieve can we rise up to something greater.

This week on the unconventional Life show is Kirsten Schowalter. Kirsten is the Author of “In My Own Skin” and founder of Ageing Courageously, a community that inspires people to make dreams come true at every age and The Flip Side of Life, support and resources for a new way to grieve. Kirsten fills us with insight and knowledge about a topic that is so misunderstood and often so silent.

“If you want to see a rainbow you have to learn to see the rain.”

― Paulo Coelho, Aleph

Embrace Your Growth Cycles

We all go through change, we lose a job, have a shift in identity, we feel dissatisfied, our weight fluctuates, we have money struggles or we find a new romantic partner.

If you observe nature and the cycle of a tree, you see that in each season it grows, blossoms, shed its leaves and hibernates. When the leaves drop they decompose to provide nutrients that support the continued growth of the tree.

You are hardwired to mimic nature.

You too have cycles where you go into hibernation, shed layers and usually, need a period of rest and reflection before you are ready for your next big move.  You probably don’t view the tree as dying just because it sheds a few leaves but just a natural process of growing.

Once you are able to get acquainted with these cycles in all aspects of life, the more resilient you become.   By not getting knocked down by figurative death you learn to release what is no longer present and for you and this can be an awakening experience to a fuller life.

Don’t Be Afraid Of Your Feelings

Are you ever hard on yourself for slowing down? Or try to hide sadness because you think you should be happy? Often it’s not how you feel but how you think about how you feel that shapes your experience.

For example, If you are feeling sad but say to yourself  “I shouldn’t be sad, be positive, put on a smile” this won’t be an authentic expression and will actually require more effort to pretend.  

When I feel in a funk I ask myself, “What is the most nourishing thing I can do for myself? It could be watching Netflix for 4 hours, having a bath or letting myself cry. The most important part is to not feel guilty or label emotions as negative experiences. By doing this practice I have found that I have become stronger and much better at navigating any painful experiences in my life.  

The number #1 question that Kirsten receives from her clients is “how do I talk about my grief or sadness? , what do I say?” Kirsten says, “That peole are afraid to talk about their fears because they think that their sadness or grief could be contagious. In reality, the pain from grief is the footprint of your love.”

Shortcut The Lows And Accelerate The Highs

Let’s face it, life is a rollercoaster ride, there are high- highs and low- lows. So how do we find balance and ease throughout this process?

Kirsten shares that once we get in the habit of navigating our emotions and giving ourselves exactly what we need in each moment we are able to find inner confidence and rise up to something greater.

Kirsten says that “courage comes from a lot of vulnerability and we can build the strength and skills to live with and dance with vulnerability to become more courageous in our next step”

Giveaway! “How To Cope With Grief Masterclass” – A 9-week program Learn how your grief can lead to your passion and purpose.

Check out Kirsten’s website and Book

Access the Free webinar “How to Talk about Grief”

+ A recording of the talk Jules references from the National Life Insurance Conference.

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By: Lisa- Renee Delwo

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