CoViD-19 has impacted our lives in how we function in our physical world and economically but the longer it lasts, the more it will impact us emotionally. Prior to starting my own consulting firm in 1999, I had worked as a non-clinical team member at our local hospice. There, I first learned of the Grief Cycle and I began to think we can experience grief at other times other than the loss of a loved one.
Don’t we also experience grief whenever we lose other things? A marriage? A job? A friendship? Money? One’s personal security?
Whether we have dipped down into the lowest point, Depression, or just got down for a short time, the next phase will begin to bring us out of our grief. This fourth phase is called Bargaining. In this phase, we begin to struggle to find meaning with our situation. We now begin to reach out to get help from others, which we can still do in this time of isolation. Our healing begins when we tell our story and others listen, hear us, validate our feelings, offer support and encouragement to move forward. We bring in positive energy.
We may make decisions about how we’re going to cope with this new chapter of our lives, whether it be short-term or possibly long-term. We find compromise so that we can become unstuck and understand this new reality. We’re on our way to getting back on track. It may be a different track but it’s a track that allows us to move ahead.
The fifth and final phase of the Grief Cycle is titled Acceptance. When we reach acceptance, we can explore options, develop future plans and are then able to move. Our thoughts lean towards: “I can’t fight it; I may as well prepare for it.” or “It’s actually going to be okay. I’m going to be okay.” We finally embrace our inevitable future. Our emotions stabilize and we can function once again at near normalcy.
Knowing that so many are adjusting to what has become our new normal, we are offering this five-part series of blog entries focused on the Grief Cycle, a model first introduced by the Swiss-American psychiatrist, Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in her 1969 book, On Death and Dying.
This event has ended.
To support our audience even more, we would like to host a dialogue virtually next Tuesday, May 26th from 12:00 – 12:30 PM (Eastern US), where we discuss reactions to the topic of Bargaining and Acceptance.
“Bargaining makes you
come up with the best ideas.”
- Trey Parker