Healing 2 minutes at a time

10 Ways Grief Shows Up in our Life: Healing Grief 2 Minutes at a Time #71

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How does grief show up in your life? Have you ever really thought about it?  Do you think that some of those ongoing emotions and struggles you’ve been facing are actually uncovered grief?  Grief shows up in our life way more than we realize.

When we begin to recognize that grief is not limited to death and that every life change causes us grief,  we can begin to heal our hearts more efficiently and effectively.  By recognizing it’s grief that we’re feeling, we give ourselves more space to heal, more comfort and a whole lot more compassion. We begin to nurture ourselves differently.  We start to be more patient with our tender heart and we begin to slow down and allow our hearts to find their way home.

Grief stops us in our tracks so we can heal and figure out which way to go from here.

The problem is that most people don’t even realize they are grieving.  But if we STOP and listen, we will often find we are grieving over a part, if not all, of the problem that is in our way.

Let grief stop you in your tracks.  It will give you time to heal before you have to catch the next train.


Let’s empower ourselves by beginning to recognize the grief in our lives.  Once we know what our grief looks like, we can heal precisely what is hurting us.


Here is my list of Ten Ways grief shows up in our life:



1)  The loss of a loved one- The most obvious cause of grief.  It can be paralyzing and full of so many steps to heal our hearts as we find ways to piece our life back together without our loved one here on Earth.

2)  The end of a relationship- Ending a relationship causes grief.  Most people think of it as a broken heart without realizing that they go through the stages of grief as they process the end of this relationship in their life.  The relationship itself created a third entity that needs to be grieved and healed as you both go your separate ways.

3) Being struck with illness- We grieve the life we once had before we had to put so much attention on our health, before we had so many other tasks to complete, before had so much pain and fear.  We grieve the life that felt more simple and healthy.

4)  Caring for aging parents- We grieve the life we had before we had to be responsible for our parents.  We grieve THEM caring for US.  We grieve the life we had before we had to be responsible for their lives.

5) Losing a job- We grieve the loss of our co-workers, the sense of responsibility, the pride of putting good work out in the world, and of course, the income.


Now, the last five ways may come as more of a surprise, but when you look deeper, you may just find you have deep rooted grief here too.  Grief is not only not limited to death, it is also not limited to “difficult” life events.  Let’s take a look:


6)  Changing jobs- We landed our dream job and we are elated, but in our second week on the job, we find ourselves feeling melancholy.  How is this possible?  It’s our dream job…AND it’s a major life change.  We grieve the comfort of the familiar; we grieve the relationships with previous co-workers; we grieve the ease of having mastered a particular role.  We grieve our old routine, even if we’ve found our dream job.

7)  Children going to kindergarten, high school, college- We finally did it!  Our children have entered the next level of their education, but the beginning of something is the ending of something else.  We grieve the relationship we had with them, and everyone who was a part of that experience, as we close that chapter and move onto the next one.

8)  Moving- We turn our houses into homes.  When we move, we grieve the life we built there in that structure.  Whether we miss neighbors, friends or the old kitchen nook, it is a process to heal our grief over this change that is central to of our lives.  Even if we have moved somewhere “better”, we need to honor ourselves through the adjustment period of saying good bye to our old life and home.

9) Having children- Yes, we created life and we would never want to change it.  We love that new child more than words, but we also grieve the life we once had that felt spontaneous, restful and far more worry free.

10) Getting married- We’re finally off the market.  We’ve committed ourselves to the loves of our lives.  But somehow, after the honeymoon, we find ourselves sad.  How is this possible?  THIS was supposed to be IT.  But if any newlywed is honest with themselves, once the honeymoon is over, they might actually find themselves grieving.  Grieving the life they had before they had to compromise on lifestyle, time or the side of the bed they sleep on.

There are so many more ways grief shows up in our lives but the purpose of this exercise is to begin to look for the grief hidden in your life.  Not to depress you but to empower you. Once you can recognize that it is grief you are feeling, you can respond accordingly.  You can give yourself the space, comfort and compassion you need to heal.  You can go through the steps of grief with awareness and intention on healing this particular life change. And once you recognize it is grief you are feeling, you will find that your heart begins to heal more efficiently and effectively in this area.

But first, we have to brave enough to stop, reflect and recognize that it is grief that is hurting us in the first place.

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