That’s right, I said it. Grief is good (no, that’s not a typo). Before I go any further, I want to remind you that the Tune-Ins are my opinions and experiences on health related topics, and if you need help dealing with your grief, don’t hesitate to contact a health professional qualified to help you.
If you have felt grief in your lifetime, congratulations – you are human! This shows that you cared about someone or something. Whether it is a person who has passed away, a friendship lost, a phase that has ended or an expectation that didn’t come to fruition, mourning will be something we encounter.
In western society we tend to hide our emotions, or we feel that we should just ‘get on with things’ or have ‘boys don’t cry’ type attitudes. My personal belief is that we need to feel this emotion to completely move on. Releasing emotions releases tension from our bodies. Studies have shown that different hormones are released when we cry for sadness vs. joy. Physiologically it is better for us to deal with our emotions.
Feeling our anger, sadness, guilt or any other emotion is far more productive than pushing it away (often we stay busy to avoid it) until we ‘explode’ with emotion, or focussing on it and replaying things over and over in our mind (we all have that friend who goes over the same stories with such emotion every time we see them). Feeling the emotion and being at peace with things will not lessen any joy, or forget anyone.
So how do we feel this emotion and let it go?
First, give yourself a break. Everyone grieves in their own time and that is okay.
Take a moment to sit or lie quietly, take some deep breaths, and feel into your body – it may be your heart, your jaw, your hands, your legs, it may just be a general feeling. Acknowledge it, name it (out loud or in your mind), feel it without expectation – you may want to cry, or yell – do so if you need to, it will pass. For some people, this naturally happens during yoga, massage (yes, there have been tears of emotional release on my table), Bowen therapy and other bodywork treatments.
You may need to do this more than once.
It is quite common to feel afraid of such an intense emotion, and in this case we can have someone close by who will support this process, or we can consult a healthcare professional such as a Counsellor or Kinesiologist who are trained to help us through these experiences.
Experiencing emotion is a natural part of life. You need to give yourself the space to feel. It is different for everyone and can come in various stages over time.