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How to deal when things don't go as planned...

Uncategorized Apr 01, 2021

I thought I'd share a few strategies that have worked for me when things in life after loss haven't gone "as planned."

 

I've been working on getting to neutral in as many aspects of my life as possible. Thus the continued journaling, breath-work, movement, yoga, stretching - all the things (by the way, if you need help in any of these areas, please let me know! All of these helpful modalities are included in the 4:13 Method!)

 

It's basically the idea that I know I can self-regulate so I don't get an emotional charge around the negative aspects of life; the things that don't go my way. And trying the best I can to remember that I am not in control of much other than my decisions, choices, and where I allow my energy to go.  And I do my best to handle these instances with ease and grace from the get-go.

 

A lofty goal when grieving.

I know.

 

And since I'm not quite there yet, I've had to bring out some "tools" when things don't go the way I wish or had planned. And I thought I would share the process that gets me there (eventually) with you because it is incredibly helpful.

 

#1: Have a mini-tantrum for a few minutes.

 

Depending on the severity of the issue, this may include venting out loud, having a good cry, maybe a little profanity. I don't try to hold in the emotions. I just let them run their course. By not holding them in and giving them full release, they tend to dissipate after a few minutes. 

For me, if I try to deny how I'm feeling, the emotions tend to fester. And then come out in other ways. And historically, that has not been good (blow-ups and complete meltdowns). 

 

#2: Talk it out if needed.

 

Once the intensity of the emotions has decreased, I check-in to see if I need to get clear on my thinking. If it's something that I actually need to think through, I'll grab a friend if possible and talk it out. If a friend isn't available, I'll write everything I can about it in my journal. For me, writing is thinking so it is often incredibly helpful to get stuff out of my head and onto paper. Things just get clearer.

 

#3: Don't make decisions when upset.

 

If the situation is something I need to respond to, I make sure I'm as close to neutral as I can get. I do my best to never ever make decisions or respond to a situation when emotions are elevated.

 

#4: Take a break (often a dance or jogging break)

 

I know this sounds a little bit weird, especially the dance part, but this is really helpful when you have to get back to your day. For me, it seems like the combination of music and movement helps clear out any emotional remnants from my body so I can get back to things.

 

For example, a few months ago, I got my first "F-you" email and this is the process I went through to figure out what to do.

Fortunately, I had space in my morning to process through it to get as close to neutral as I could.

And I still had work to do. Basically, life didn't stop because I got an upsetting email.

A quick run with some music and I felt so much better.

 

It's not always easy. There are plenty of ups and downs.

 

 I hope you have your own "tools" to deal with the upsets along this journey.

 Just thought I'd share some of mine in case you found them helpful.

 

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