When grief is in your body, you feel that bone-tired, dragging one foot in front of the other, fatigue. It can also feel like the grief is sucking the energy from your mind, emotions and heart. You have a sense of disorientation, and most likely, you have no map through this devastating terrain.

I personally experienced grief sucking my energy from me in the form of a saber tooth tiger. I showed up at my Rubenfeld Synergy Training and was in a session with another student synergist. She put her left hand in front of my left shoulder, and her right hand cupped the back of my left arm at my shoulder. She asked me, “What are you noticing in this shoulder right now?” I immediately began to cry as I said, “Oh, the bone-tiring fatigue of grief.” She asked, “Is there an image that comes to mind?” I replied, “Oh my, there is a saber tooth tiger that has got its fangs in my shoulder, and now it is shaking me. It is the shaking that is making me so afraid, and it has me feeling totally limp like a rag doll.” She said, “Breathe deep and feel your feet.” She ran her hands down the front and back of my arm, and the deep feeling of bone-tired grief and that shaking tiger left my body.

So what can you do if you don’t have a synergist to work with you? Simply say, “Okay, how can I take care of myself right now by receiving support from others? I don’t feel like I can sleep. I don’t want to eat. What can I do?”

When someone comes up to you and asks, “What can I do to help you?” simply respond with something like “please take our shoes and polish them for the funeral.” “Please come over and walk with me for twenty minutes, three times a week.” “Get me out of this house and into nature where I can breathe.” Everyone knows that exercise will energize you and get you going again.

Another thing you can do when it feels like grief is sucking out your energy is simply go and lie down on your bed. Allow yourself to melt into your bed like butter. This will allow you to start releasing your grief.

This is another thing that works very well if you feel like you are extremely anxious in your body. Take your dominant hand and its fingers – the index finger through your little finger. Place them on the two thumb joints of your other hand, simply laying them there like you are playing a musical instrument or closing the holes on a flute. Hold this position, breathe deeply and then allow yourself to melt and release your anxiety.

Something else you can do is sit in a chair with your feet on the floor so that you feel your heel, your big toe and your little toe in the shape of a triangle, and draw the energy in from the floor. Breathe in deeply, drawing energy in and imagine yourself accessing the fire of life that still resides within you, knowing full well that it is there.

When grief is in your mind, it feels like total confusion. Your mind will chatter endlessly about things like this. “Why didn’t you do this?” “You should have done this, and you could have prevented it from happening.” “Why couldn’t you have done this?”

This type of beat up is something everyone does to themselves at one time or another during the grief process. It can be a very belittling experience.

When grief is in your emotions, it simply feels like you are on a roller coaster. When grief comes upon you, it may not be triggered by a thought or a word, a sound or a smell. It is just there. Because of this, you can go from feeling like you are totally enveloped in anxiety and you can’t move a step to being in such deep despair that you are wailing. You can also have moments when you feel extremely happy, and then all of a sudden you feel terribly guilty about being happy. This is certainly something that none of you need to do to yourself. It can actually be those glimmers of happiness, those glimmers of hopefulness, those glimmers of loving yourself and others that can make up that map that gets you through your grief.

A client once said, “I want to feel my heart again, because it is so frozen.” When grief is in your heart, it feels like your heart is broken, shattered, deeply wounded or frozen with no feeling at all. If your grief is so great that you are actually experiencing pain in your heart, you need to have it checked out by your physician. The other feelings of grief vary because your heart has experienced the greatest devastation that it can possibly feel.

When you are going through this horrible grief, this is something you can do to help you keep going through the day. Stop for ten seconds, and imagine the most beautiful scene you can, because each person has a choice concerning how they will move through their grief. This grief can be something that you do without thinking, because you feel powerless against it, or you can stop and say, “Wait. I have a choice. In these ten seconds, I am going to remember my beloved that is gone and the wonderful things that we did together.”

After those ten seconds, you may want to experience another ten seconds of wonderful memories or simply go to the window and look outside. You can also step outside in the sunshine or bring a green plant to your desk and spend ten seconds looking at the aliveness of your plant. Over the course of time, you can stretch these ten seconds into one minute.

Spencer Johnson, back in the ‘70s, wrote a marvelous book called One Minute for Myself, and he suggested that people take one minute for themselves every hour or every day. So you, too, can daily choose to take ten seconds at a time and breathe deeply, look at something beautiful or have a wonderful memory.

If you’re struggling with the emotional process of grief...

I want to share a free gift with you that can help you recognize the physical, cognitive and emotional reactions you may be experiencing. You’ll also take away prompts to use daily along your journey.

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