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Sadness: Bask In It

Oooffff it's been a about you?

Why do I blog? I sometimes wonder! I am continuing my series for an ultimate resource for you all but here I am pushing when I am not delivering. SO Stepping back from a lackluster approach last night ... today is a new day.

Let's talk about sadness! So many slew of questions ... right? If not... let me encourage your questions? Let me remind you curiosity is a super power!?!? Or how about my token phrase of this series.... "Explore, DONT IGNORE!"

I am perfectly fine with you're irritations that I repeat a lot. You wanna know why? Well... that is many's experience with the secret to life. When you sit with your skeletons and master the simple...WOW do you find that your life is worth living. That is a secret sauce I will continue to prescribe until you prove why that couldn't possibly work. What is "Little DO I know" designed for... conversation! So let's do it!

SO times are not changing, they are still very easily seen the same. When you boil it all down, it all has to do with the same emotions and the same habits with the same cycle of reaffirming , confirming, or changing who we are. Sadness holds a huge part of that. We touched on anger last week and I must confess that I don't see anger without sadness nor do I see processing sadness or grief without anger. Have you had a chance to dig into the simplified steps behind dealing with grief? I'm going to list the 7 instead of the 5 and you decide from there:

The 7 stages of grief

1. Shock

Feelings of shock are unavoidable in nearly every situation, even if we feel we have had time to prepare for the loss of a loved one. We know it’s going to happen, but not right then, not on that day. People in shock often appear to be behaving normally without a lot of emotion, because the news hasn’t fully sunk in yet.

“Often there is a sense of numbness and a self-protective detachment from your feelings, because they are too intense to deal with,” says Nathan.

2. Denial

Many people experience denial after a bereavement: they know something has happened but it doesn’t feel real.

“For me, the denial was not that I didn’t believe it – it was more a sense of, ‘But how can they not be here? How can they have been here, and now they aren’t?’” says Sherene.

In addition to experiences of shock and denial, people often describe having a ‘mental fog’, says Nathan. “This can include forgetfulness, lack of concentration, sleeplessness, lack of motivation, repetitive thoughts and inability to make a decision.”

3. Anger

It’s perfectly normal to feel anger in times of loss, but often people try to keep this stage of grief hidden.

“Anger is a difficult emotion to deal with and can be minimised by others,” says Nathan. “But it’s important to find someone with whom we can connect in an honest way.”

“I felt frustrated that my experience of grief was different to that of those I was close to,” says Sherene. “I was angry with myself – that I was taking too long, and wanting to talk about Mum and Dad to people who felt I should’ve moved on.”

4. Bargaining

The bargaining stage is about making promises to yourself or a higher being, asking the universe for a chance to put things right. A bereaved person may seek reason where there is none, and may feel guilty about how they behaved, or feel in some way to blame.

“There’s a sense that, ‘Maybe I could have done things differently’,” says Nathan. “If only I’d stopped them leaving the house or I knew more about their medical condition, I could’ve intervened. We may feel helpless and hopeless, and consumed by thoughts of, ‘What if?’”

5. Depression

The jumble of emotions that usually accompanies the grieving process can typically lead to feelings of depression, isolation, anxiety and a feeling of dread. Sometimes the suffering seems too much to bear. “Someone may question the meaning of life, or feel they want to be reunited with the person that’s died,” says Nathan. In cases like this, it’s so important to ask for help.

“People are often unsure of how to help us in our grief, so if you can accept an offer of help or ask for help, it will have the effect of strengthening those friendships,” he adds.

6. Acceptance and hope

Humans, by nature, crave contact, connection and support, and at some stage in the grieving process will want to engage with friends and family again. Acceptance is about realising you can’t change the circumstances, but that you can gain some control over how you respond.

“At times, we may need to distract ourselves from the grief, or place it to one side, so we can get on with work or social situations,” says Nathan.

But this is also a stage where you might slip backwards and find yourself feeling overwhelmed from all the emotions again. It’s normal to move between any of the stages of grief from hour to hour, or even minute to minute.

Says Sherene: “I gave myself permission to grieve. I felt that patience was a gift to myself.”

7. Processing grief

There is no right or wrong way to grieve – the process is highly individual. In addition, there’s no quick fix; the healing process takes time and varies from person to person. Importantly, there is no “normal” timeframe, so be patient with yourself.

Wendy also suggests the following coping strategies that you may find helpful.

  • Express your grief in words or another creative outlet, such as painting or drawing.

  • Connect with others – this can be loved ones or community support groups.

  • Ask for help, in whatever form.

  • Practise deep breathing regularly.

  • Set small, realistic goals.

  • Ensure you’re getting enough sleep and aim for some form of movement each day.

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet and keep hydrated.

  • Rehearse how you respond to questions and new situations.

So How do we avoid grief and sadness without living? one can hope you are finding yourself realizing that you cannot. Would it be easier to pretend... maybe? But how much more fulfillment is found in experience? How much confidence is discovered when we take the trust fall? How many glorious moments do we experience from experiencing sadness?

Don't hide from it my love... your sadness makes you the most beautiful example of humanity! It can show everyone around you the beauty that lies deep within. Those skeletons in your closet deserve a dance. Don't hide from them! Pour a cold whatever and cheers with them. They are your friends as long as you don't continuingly convince them to be horrible and hide.

Take a moment to put your toughness aside... Charles Bukowski says it best compared to my less refined reflections:

there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I'm too tough for him, I say, stay in there, I'm not going to let anybody see you. there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I pour whiskey on him and inhale cigarette smoke and the whores and the bartenders and the grocery clerks never know that he's in there. there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I'm too tough for him, I say, stay down, do you want to mess me up? you want to screw up the works? you want to blow my book sales in Europe? there's a bluebird in my heart that wants to get out but I'm too clever, I only let him out at night sometimes when everybody's asleep. I say, I know that you're there, so don't be sad. then I put him back, but he's singing a little in there, I haven't quite let him die and we sleep together like that with our secret pact and it's nice enough to make a man weep, but I don't weep, do you?

Just incase you don't feel the reading.... feel Miranda Lamberts Spin on an amazing poem....

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