While talking to a friend yesterday, she expressed the anger, fear, guilt, frustration and overwhelming feelings she was having about an unknown future life after the loss of her husband she had been married to for 30+ years. This is exactly what grief feels like. There are so many intense emotions and it’s almost impossible to find peace, right? With grief our old life is gone, the door has closed, and there is no way we can go back. We don’t like our new normal and we just want the old life that we had. Does this sound familiar?
Feeling like this is where our suffering comes from.
Today, I would like to share one belief that has helped me climb out of the suffering dark hole of grief. That belief is that WE CAN CHOOSE HOW TO THINK, FEEL AND ACT no matter what is taking place in the outside world.
I know some of you may be thinking “How is this possible? Thoughts and feelings just come and go without our permission so how can we stop and/or control them?”
The answer is we can’t. However, the hard reality is that we don’t have to DWELL on the thoughts that pop up in our heads, we don’t have to FEEL the thoughts that pop up in our heads and we don’t have to ACT on the thoughts that pop up in our heads. We always have a CHOICE. Let’s just pause for a moment to really let that sink in. Then, I will share with you how this mindset has helped me and many other women who are going through grief do so with less suffering and faster healing.
After I lost my late husband who was my true love and soulmate three years ago to cancer, I was furious with my life! What had I done wrong to be punished so badly? Growing up in an abusive family in China, I often woke up in the middle of the night due to numerous factors. I was starving, had frostbite on my hands and feet in the winter time, never had a toy during my entire childhood, never had a picture taken of me until I was 11 years old. I also lost my dad in high school to cancer and also entered into a 5 year abusive relationship which often led to me being beaten up in public… and the list just goes on and on. I thought I had already experienced my fair share of suffering by the time I met my late husband and thought we would live happily ever after.
But we only ended up having 10 beautiful and happy years. Life is truly not fair, right? I know you can understand how I felt because your story is just as heartbreaking as mine.
How can we find peace in these horrible events? Below is a thought process sample to walk you through the steps.
Step 1: What is a stressful thought or belief that just pops up in your head?
For example, it is not fair that these horrible things just keep happening to me!
Write down your answers you are having at this moment.
Step 2: How are you feeling now?
For example, I feel angry.
Step 3: Does this thought bring me peace?
If it does, find another thought to work on. If it doesn’t, continue to step 4.
Step 4: What thought can I choose to replace my stressful thought?
For example, I turned around my stressful thought from “It is not fair that these horrible things just keep happening to me!” to “It is fair that those horrible things just keep happening to me!” You may say that this new thought is bs and that it makes you even more angry. Yup, I felt the same way too when I first tried this. Now ask yourself to close your eyes and take a deep breathe. Can you find at least one reason how this new belief can actually bring you more peace? It was not easy for me at the beginning and it took me a while to come up with at least one reason. Experiencing horrible things in my life has helped me become a strong, wise and compassionate person and I use my personal experience to help others.
What is your new thought? Write it down!
Step 5: How are you feeling now?
For example, I feel empowered and more purposeful.
Did you see how I changed my thought/feeling from anger to empowerment? You can continue to repeat these 5 steps until you reach your desired peace state.
It would be extremely helpful if you could share your process with us so more people can see how it works in the real life to help us suffer less and heal faster.
If you would like to learn more about healing yourself, sign up for my free webinar by clicking on the following link: https://bit.ly/3esRJQn
Thank you for reading! If you like what you read, please comment below, or share it with your friends. Don’t forget to follow me on my Facebook page Color and Grace, Instagram and LinkedIn account for more practical tips on how to suffer less and heal faster! If you would like to learn more about healing yourself, sign up for my free webinar by clicking on the following link: https://bit.ly/3esRJQn
Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional!