Grief isn’t something we only experience when someone dies.

We can experience grief when we:

  • Move
  • Loose a job
  • Change jobs
  • Are injured in an accident
  • Are diagnosed with an illness
  • A loved one is diagnosed with an illness or is injured
  • Experience trauma or abuse

Grief isn’t linear.

Grief doesn’t always appear at the time of the event.

It can appear later.

There is no right or wrong way to process grief.

There is no time period for processing grief.

Even after you think you have processed grief,

It can appear unexpectedly years later.

Often blame, pain and bargaining are tied up in grief.

We are angry that it went the way it did.

If only _______________ then this won’t have happened.

If we/they could/would have_________________ then it would be different.

Often, we grieve what we can’t control.

Recognizing what we can’t control and what we can control is helpful.

We can still grieve the loss while letting go of trying to control it.

Writing out what happened to cause your grief can be helpful.

Once you have gotten it down on paper look for:

1. Any If statements (If they had, If I had).

2. Look for should have or shouldn’t have statements.

3. Look for feelings. (It hurt. I am angry).

4. Look for any judgement or blaming statements (Why didn’t they? It is my fault).

5. Look for anything else that isn’t the facts.


1. Rewrite the above with only the facts.

2. Can you see the facts are neutral?

3. All the rest ties you up in blame, pain and bargaining.

4. Realize you don’t have and didn’t have control over the facts.

5. Give yourself time to accept the facts.

6. You will experience grieve and other feelings.

7. You can process those by asking yourself what thought is causing each feeling.

8. Is that thought serving you?

9. If not what thought could you think that would help you feel better?

Remember there isn’t a right or wrong way to process grief. There is no timeline. So be gentle with yourself.

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