A confusing and frustrating aspect about the grief process is that it is not linear. You may start to feel better, thinking, onward and upward only to have something trigger it all over again. You may wonder, “Will I ever feel better? Will I ever get past this pain?”
This has happened to me many times while recovering from my divorce. Work will be going well, I’ll be engaging with friends and actually feeling happy, when I’ll see or smell something that will remind me of my former sense of home and the grief will be re- triggered.
It’s important during these times to separate yourself from the moment. As painful as the moments are, they will pass.
Pain feels unnatural and our instinct is to recoil from it, push it away or suppress it. Unfortunately, it needs to be expressed and healed which takes time and patience. You can do things to help the healing process such as controlling your focus and practicing self-care, but it is still going to take time. The challenge is to be patient while holding the faith that things will get better.
“….Natural events balance themselves out by seeking their opposites, and this process of balance is at the heart of all healing…That is why, even in the midst of an extreme situation, the wise are patient. Whether the situation is illness, calamity, or their own anger, they know that healing will follow upheaval.”
Believing that no matter how painful your situation is, it is neither pervasive nor permanent will help you become more patient.
In navigating my own career and life transitions, I’ve learned that life is a compilation of moments, and to appreciate the power in each one. Each moment offers you the option to choose what you will think, how you will feel, and how you will respond. How we view our life and our circumstances can change literally in an instant. While the next moment may not illuminate the way forward, our perception about the situation can change. The key is to believe that this will happen, that we will heal. New options will present themselves if we will be patient and wait.
If you knew that you would be happy and successful in five years, how would that change your perspective today?