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You’re Going to Be Okay: Self-Care During Grief and Hardship

Colorful flowers on the edge of some trees with a blue sky background

“You’re going to be OK. Better than Ok. You’re going to be great. … And you’re going to meet amazing people in your life who will help you and love you.” —Reese Witherspoon 

“The past has no power to stop you from being present now. …. Acceptance looks like a passive state, but in reality, it brings something entirely new into this world.” —Eckhart Tolle

The gentle rain falling outside my window today reminds me of our ongoing need for self-care. Like the flowing waters that nourish the earth, our tears during times of sadness also cleanse the inner landscape of our lives to make space for the beautiful moments yet awaiting us.

Sometimes our self-care looks like: sipping hot tea while wrapped up in a cozy blanket reading a good book, or walking outdoors amid colorful leaves with a few rays of bright sunlight overhead, or exercising at the neighborhood gym, or chopping vegetables to cook a big pot of homemade soup, or dancing barefoot in the living room to a favorite song, or having a reassuring conversation with a close friend, or watching a laugh-out-loud late night movie, or enjoying a creative outlet such as painting, playing music, journaling, or knitting.

Other times, our self-care needs more: a counselor to help us navigate life challenges, a doctor to assess if there are medical issues that need addressed, a meeting with a sponsor or a 12-step group to get us back on track, a connection with a local support group for compassionate care, or a visit to a place of worship for spiritual nourishment.

And other times, self-care means giving ourselves permission to take a time-out. Occasionally, we need to allow ourselves the space to step back from people or situations and just breathe for a bit. This need for calm, soothing space is especially vital if our families, our romantic relationships, or our work environments are not healthy. There is nothing spiritual about tolerating anyone or anything that is toxic to our soul. Handing our happiness over to others is not what we are meant for. We have an absolute right to the love and joy that are so deservingly ours!

While taking the time to breathe, we can listen deeply to our heart and to the quiet promptings of our intuition. We can ask:

What do I need in order to heal?

What do I need going forward?

What do I need to really be happy? 

Trust this wisdom at the center of your being. Along the way, learn to turn away from the harmful negatives in your life and, instead, turn toward your healing and your inner peace.

Only our heart knows the life-path that leads to our happiness. As Paulo Coelho notes in The Alchemist, “Listen to your heart. It knows all things.”

That heart knowledge will bring you home: to the inner sanctuary of your life, where you decide how to live and how to go forth each new day with peace, love, courage, and boundless joy.

Be well.


Peace & Love, 

Diana Ensign

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