Hi my mindful friend,
I’ve been thinking about the importance of mindfulness in relation to grief as we all navigate some form of grief at certain times in our lives. I’m especially aware of holding a sensitivity for the grief felt of some of those within my current care, and there’s also awareness in me of grief activated in many, by the devastating unfolding of events in our world. We can be grieving for many different reasons.
Our grieving isn’t only about the loss of someone exceptionally close to us, we may also experience grief from a loss of health and physical agility or adeptness at managing our needs independently and so much more.
It might also mean a feeling of loss when we are forced to let go a period of time in our lives. This might be transition from work to retirement, especially if we’ve derived our greatest sense of purpose from our working lives.
It might be as seemingly simple as making the transition from Summer to Autumn for those of us navigating S.A.D. What we may consider ‘lesser griefs’ (like losing a season) can often be a suffering that's shut down in us because we don’t feel we deserve to feel this in the face of someone else’s grief we deem much greater.
Mindfulness (awareness) can help us notice when we might be doing this and help us validate our own feelings instead of falling into a trap of comparing ourselves to others and supressing what is true for us in any particular moment, whatever the circumstances.
Being aware of ourselves IN a moment of struggle is one of the most difficult yet important things we can learn to cultivate. We get so lost IN the storm of struggle we forget to step back and see ourselves as though from a little distance. As soon as we do this, it creates a little bit of space and offers a ‘pause’ to tend to ourselves with kind attention.
Members of the Inner Care for Calm program and I, are all regularly practicing little yet powerful techniques to help us with grief in the online program of sessions and this drip-feed approach of regular contact and point of accountability is making a difference for everyone to feel more comfortable, more united and less alone where they are.
Validating our feelings without getting lost in the story of our grief is a valuable tool that helps ground us and reminds us we can hold this. It also reminds us that whilst it can seem overwhelming, we will never be overcome, and it's practiced within the mindfulness meditation we share together. In addition, the application of mindful self-compassion techniques which I teach weekly, is essential for navigating all forms of grief.
I'm sharing this short 5 min video of Jack Kornfield talking about grief because I'm aligned with his teaching and mentored by teachers who work alongside him and Tara Brach and therefore want to share some of his wisdom with you today.
Know that you and everything you feel is held today and all days,