griefOne of the most important personal skills we can develop is learning how to shorten the pain time in a crisis.”  #RebuildingWhenYourRelationshipEnds

So, you get hit with bad news, or an unexpected bill comes in the mail, or your car gets hit in a parking lot, or an extended family member gets a tragic health diagnosis… And your emotions ignite! You go into hyper-focus on the issue, and the rest of your world stops. You start venting. Your mood completely tanks. Sure, you can get by at work or home, but there is now a big elephant in your room.

First of all, we all need to grieve EVERY LOSS in our lives. Of course, smaller disappointments like a movie getting sold out before you get there is a much shorter grieving time than when losing a beloved pet.  Without grieving, we just add emotional layers of yuck in our spirits that never get dealt with, and that comes out in dysfunctional, harmful ways. Grieving allows us to be more fully available to others on the other side of the sadness.

Second, though, we don’t want to perpetually stay down when life throws us a doozy. It is a choice to stay down (which doesn’t gain us anything) and it’s a choice to stand back up (which starts us down the path of recovery). Sure, feel the pain fully of bad news. Share it with those who can bear it and who can point you back in the right direction. Burn off the anger on a treadmill. Look for the rose (the “could have been worse”) among the thorns.

Make the next right decision to rebuild and take one step that direction instead of standing still. And seek God for the wherewithal to bear up under the pain. It’ll shorten the pain duration. Just know: you WILL get through this!