Giving yourself permission to move on with Lori Shaw, LBSW.
After you’ve made it through the first few months, or even years, after the loss of a close loved one, you may have already come to terms with the fact that your life will never be the same.
But it doesn’t mean you have to live without hope.
Hope is more than a platitude, it’s the ability to look to the future and know that though you may struggle with difficult emotions – especially on significant holidays or anniversaries – you’re going to be okay.
Hospice & Palliative Care of the Piedmont Licensed Baccalaureate Social Worker, Lori Shaw, shares a few important factors to keep in mind as you enter a new phase of your grief journey: moving on.
Here are a few steps you can take to find hope after grief.
Remember: grief is different for everyone
There is no timeline for grief, and everyone’s journey is different. So, discovering you’re ready to take a step toward moving on doesn’t fall on a clinical timeline.
Moving on doesn’t mean that you’re forgetting your loved one, that their time on this earth or their impact on your life is any less profound. But only you can know when you’re ready to begin to explore what it means to enter this new phase of your life.
Set goals for yourself
It’s important, as you begin to have more “good days” on your grief journey, to set goals and plans for yourself beyond getting through the day. They can be as simple as going to the grocery store, or taking a special trip with your family.
Giving yourself something to look forward to can bring enjoyment back into your life as you begin to heal.
Ask yourself, “How would my loved one want me to spend the rest of my life?”
Asking yourself this question can play an important part in your first steps toward healing. In all likelihood, your loved one would want you to find stability and even joy following their death. Keeping this in mind as you continue your journey can help you heal and even start enjoying life to its fullest once more.
Grief can last forever – but so can hope
You likely already know that though the searing pain of losing a loved one will never fully go away, it will eventually subside in due time. Though you may always live with grief as you carry the memory of your loved one with you into the future, you can also carry hope for a brighter future with you, as well.
Learn more about our virtual grief series, Whenever You’re Ready.