Dealing with Stress

Turn Stress into Solutions!

Would you like a formula for success that you can apply to every problem?

A formula that turns stress into solutions? Check out this tool!

Tool:

Draw five columns on a piece of paper

1. In the first column write down what you would like, what you need – basically what you Want

2. In the second what you will do, what Actions you will take to make it happen

3. Next write down the probable Obstacles you will encounter

4. Then write your Strategy to overcome these obstacles

5. Then record to what or to whom you will be Accountable?

What I want Actions required Obstacles Strategy Accountability

The Five Stages of the Grief Process

Grief occurs as the result of the loss of something significant, such as the passing of a loved one, a health crisis and also over something as seemingly insignificant as missing out on a carpark.

The common factor in all these events is change. Change, even positive change, equates to loss and any loss requires an adjustment – this adjustment process is felt as grief.

An awareness of the stages of grief, can help us to deal with the feelings that inevitably accompany loss. If we are aware that what we are feeling is entirely normal and that there is a rhyme and a reason, a time and a season we are better placed to be able to accept and allow the process to work through us.

It should also be borne in mind that we are all different, so some people experience the stages in varying orders, times or degrees of intensity.

The Five Stages are commonly represented as:

1. Denial

2. Anger

3. Bargaining & Regret

4. Sadness

5. Acceptance

Denial

Denial is generally the first stage in the grief process. A part of us cannot accept that the change or loss has actually occurred. We may feel numb or experience shock. This is our emotions way of dealing with an unexpected and significant change.

An example would be hearing of the death of someone we loved – say our grandmother.

Anger

The next stage is us anger. We probably feel that the loss is unjustified, and ask “Why me?”

We feel angry that we have lost “our Gran.”

Bargaining & Regret

In the bargaining stage, we are trying to come to terms with what has happened and may regret what we didn’t or could not do.

We may regret that we didn’t spend more time with Gran while she was alive.

Common thoughts include “If only … “I wish … “Maybe if ….”

Sadness

Feelings of sadness actually signal the end of the grieving process. Sadness is a very positive emotion, it means we are beginning to actually feel the loss and come to terms with it.

We start to feel profound sadness that Gran is gone.

We may wish to end this stage and to “move on” as quickly as possible, but at such times it is good to recall the medical maxim, “Patients need patience.”

Acceptance

The final stage in the first cycle of grief is acceptance, and represents that the healing is complete.

We are starting to incorporate into our life and our thinking, the knowledge that our Gran is gone and is not coming back.

Awareness of the stages of grief can help us to give ourselves permission to grieve and heal. It can also increase our emotional competence because we are better able to identify what we are feeling and why.

In addition to the above 5 Cycles of Grief there are also the phenomenon’s of Transference and the Theory of 7 Cycles.

Transference

If we have not fully felt our loss, or if the loss is especially significant, we will probably experience some degree of transference where when we grieve over one event, and we are actually feeling the grief over something else.

Using the example above, our grandmother may pass and we don’t feel much emotion but when our beloved cat unexpectedly dies, we experience profound loss and feelings out of proportion to the event.

This is a clue that what we are really dealing with is not our cats passing, but our unfelt feelings over our grandmother.

Its ok, you’re ok!

It is important to know that how we feel doesn’t have to always dictate our actions.

You can also use this tool to acquire a new habit, by doing something every day

you wouldn’t normally do.

Exercise:

To demonstrate this, try the following:

• Do something today even though you don’t feel like doing it

• Do something tomorrow even though you are afraid of doing it

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