36. Dealing with loss.

Hi,

The following is an article I wrote a couple of  years ago for a previous blog of mine. I am just re-sharing it. Hope it is of some value to you.
Loss (noun) is defined as 
1. The fact or process of losing something or someone
2. The state or feeling of grief when deprived of someone or something of value
3. A person or thing that is badly missed when lost

Each one of us has to come face to face with losing something/someone at one time or the other in life. Loss is like a never ending nightmare that actually happens for real. Loss can be of any form for example; breaking up with a loved one, death of a pet/loved one, getting fired from a dream job, changing jobs, graduating from college, or loss of health.

Dealing with loss is not easy. None of us plan for it nor is there an easy way to get over it.  Loss can come in any form and size but more often than not, the process of getting over it is the same.
A natural response to loss is the feeling of grief or deep sorrow. Grieving is a highly individual and personal experience that depends on various factors including one’s faith, life experiences, personality, and the type of loss itself. Being aware of the various ‘stages of grief’ which were introduced by psychiatrist Elisabeth Kubler-Ross, helps in dealing better with loss and its emotional aftermath.

The five stages of grief are:

  1. Denial: We just want to assume the loss never occurred and try hard to believe so. This is the stage when one would be inclined to say, ‘This can’t happen with me! It just can’t.’
  1. Bargaining: In hopes of reversing a loss, we are ready to make any compromise. No matter what, we just want to get back what we have lost. This is the stage when one is convinced things can change and say ‘Let’s make a deal?’
  2. Anger: The bitter, mean, and the ugly side that we never knew we possessed, is well expressed in this stage. Though we try hard, controlling anger seems impossible. This is when one is disposed to find someone to blame and say, ‘This is all because of him/her…….or me.’
  3. Depression: We feel sad and lost. Life seems to be dull, meaningless and a misery. This is the stage when we keep saying, ‘My life is a mess.’
  4. Acceptance: This is when we come to terms with loss and start living with reality. We understand that loss cannot be reversed and also that it cannot be the end of life. This is the stage when we try to make the best of what’s left and tell ourselves that ‘Everything happens for a reason and I will make the best of what I can.’

There is no particular order for the above discussed five stages or a specific timeframe for how long each one of it would last. Sometimes, these stages can be repetitive too. Being aware of what you are going through helps, but knowing that what you are going through is normal and COMMON, makes a huge difference in getting over a loss and letting go.

Acknowledging loss and accepting the fact that losing something actually results in gaining something else, makes it easier to stay happy. Grieving over a loss is totally normal but making the best of a loss by turning it into an opportunity and the ability to be open and appreciative of this new opportunity…this is what making the best of life is all about.

Stay positive. Keep your head high. And thumbs up, if you are trying to make the best out of the not so best situation of life!

Sources

Coping with Grief and Loss 

Stages of Grief 

Stages of the Loss Process

Coping with a job-loss

PS: 

“If you win, you get what you want.
If you are successful, you get what you need.
If you lose something, it creates the possibility of gaining something you need/want or both.

Basically, there is nothing in life that is actually meant to beat you down unless you want it to.”

Please feel free to share your comments/suggestions.

Thank You,
Archana

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