When confronted with a major event in our lives, we can all go through the 5 stages of grief. This event might be something seemingly insurmountable at the time, but you have the ability to get through it. You need to choose to get through it and ‘bounce back’.
The 5 stages of grief are Shock(Denial) – Anger – Depression – Bargaining – Acceptance
Decision making during some of these stages of grief can prove challenging. Equally, if you are supporting someone through the ‘grief cycle’ you may find some of their decision-making and behaviour to be challenging.
In the first stage, Shock/Denial, people will often look for blame others for the event. Denial and blame can often result in procrastination of decisions and an inability to move forward.
The next stage is characterized by Anger. This highly emotional stage can result in irrational language, aggression towards loved ones followed by shame. It can be difficult to work with someone during this stage because their energy can be wrapped up in the emotion of the situation.
The energy spent in stage two can prove too much for some, resulting in them entering into a state of depression and fatigue. During this stage often need help from others to make decision and offer guidance. This stage can, paradoxically, be the start of the ‘road to resilience’.
Coming through the fatigue stage will hopefully result in the person reaching out and talking about the event. Discussion, in my opinion, should be encouraged as it can be incredible cathartic. However, a quick word of warning; discussion can result in the person falling back into the depression stage. This may happen a number of times.
Acceptance of the situation and exploring options, utilising future tense language is the sign of person ‘back in the game’. This is when new plans are discussed, decision-making has more clarity, goals can be set, strategy devised and executed. One can feel incredibly empowered when you reach this stage.
I know from my own point of view once I reached the acceptance stage during my cancer journey I had daily feelings of elation! In fact, I think my family and friends started to worry that I was ‘on something’. I also had moments of being ‘on fire’ and ‘in a hurry’, recognising that life is precious, make the most of every second of every minute of every day.
How resilient are you? Why not take this simple test…. http://www.cehd.umn.edu/fsos/projects/ruralmnlife/swf/resiliency_assessment.swf