Grief is a multi-faceted response to loss, particularly to the loss of someone or something to which a bond was formed. Although conventionally focused on the emotional response to loss, it also has physical, cognitive, behavioral, social, and philosophical dimensions. While the terms are often used interchangeably, bereavement often refers to the state of loss, and grief to the reaction to loss.- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grief
Yes, I just quoted Wikipedia, this is my blog, not a research paper.
I choose that definition because of the last statement ” grief” “the reaction to loss”.
Merriam- Webster defines it as “deep sadness especially for the loss of someone or something loved”.
Sadness is a reaction to the loss. There are many other reactions to loss, other feelings and states of being. I think they are missing something. I personally think Wikipedia does a much better job of defining it than Merriam-Webster. It is muti- faceted.
And I am going to go one step further and define it as reaction to change in one’s life.
We can grieve the loss of a job, change in our financial situation, change in our life roles, and so many other large and small changes in our life.
It’s time for a change…
Today, I decided to let go of my story of loss. I wrote out all of my losses over the past several years, all the big ones, and decided I would let go of “my story of loss”. What does that mean? I don’t know but what comes to mind is Debbie Ford. And so I googled to jog my memory and found this:
The following is taken from an article in the New Age Retailer from Jan/ FEb 2007. The author and editor in chief is Kathy McGee.
You will find the following starting on the bottom left of page 5:
The interviewer, McGee asks Debbie Ford how does she get rid of her self- criticism and self- doubt.
Debbie Ford replies:
I haven’t gotten rid of it. When I dip into my story (the negative internal dialogue that keeps us stuck), it’s there anytime I want to revisit it. It’s part of the collective unconscious, it’s part of our humanity. But today, I know that’s the inside of my story.
When I feel like I’m being self-critical or insecure, I know that I’m deeply in my humanity. Inside our humanity, inside our story, it’s all fear-based. We compare ourselves, think there’s something wrong with us- we’re not smart enough, pretty enough, don’t have the right whatever.
I try to pop myself out of my story and into my divine self. I ask myself, “What do I have to do right now? Do I need to get on my hands and knees and pray? Do I need to meditate?” it’s as simple as asking, “If I totally trusted and were in connection with the Divine right now, what would I hear?” Start to listen to that new frequency, and it raises you right out of your story.
I think what you just asked me is so vital to the process, because most people are trying to get rid of their self-doubt, their self-criticism, and their fears. you can’t get rid of it. It’s part of your humanity.
And then the interviewer, McGee, sums up the rest of it when she adds, “And by trying to get rid of it, we’re creating more fear and digging ourselves deeper into our story.”
And Debbie goes on about fear saying that it is a healthy emotion. She says to identify the feeling of fear and ask what it looks like, what it feels like in order to give fear its own personality, different from your own.
“Anything we are identified with has control over us. So, if you’re just scared and in fear, fear has total control. If you can make it separate from yourself, you will have control over it. If you give fear a different name, face, smell, color, or size from yours, it becomes something other than you. You can say, “OK fear, I see you. What do you need from me to lie down and be peaceful?””
Today, I wrote the post, What Does it all mean?, and now I can understand that I was “in my humanity”. I was also in my story and therefore in fear. What is wonderful is that I have a better understanding of what it means to “let go of my story”. I have only read Debbie Ford’s First book, The Dark Side of the Light Chasers, but here I am understanding better what I sought to do when I first posted the title for this blog. The beauty is that I had no idea where I would go with this when I wrote the title. I only knew that I was in fact, ready to let go of my story of loss. I used prior knowledge and found my answer.
I don’t have to get rid of my story but I can move away from it. I can also see when I am “in my story” and use my tools to step outside of it if I choose. No matter what, I don’t have to beat myself up about any of it. I can be ok with being in my story and with choosing to move out of it. Because I choose, when I am consciously choosing, to move out of fear, I know that I can have more moments of moving out of my story and stepping back from it. Even Debbie Ford, author of 7 books, speaker and founder of a Life Coaching Business, admits to still having dark days. It is a process.