Acknowledge Grief in Yourself and Others

grayscale photography of crying woman


Recently, I woke up feeling depleted. I spend a good deal of time listening to clients and creating a safe space for conversation. Many expressed an array of emotions in response to the headlines all of us experience each day. Anger, sadness, hopelessness, fatigue, disbelief – all can be related to grief.

One of the greatest learning of 2021 for me, number two on the list found in the Client Wisdom Lessons in Action blog, is to acknowledge grief in yourself and others. While working with clients, I remind them to take a step back or away in order to allow themselves to heal. This advice is not an everyday occurrence, and is available when it is needed. I needed my own advice on Friday.

The question rose in my mind, what do I do now? How do I acknowledge the grief?

Conversation with myself, the mindful business coach

While working with one of my clients, we chuckled over the realization that it is often easier to help someone else than it is to apply the information to yourself. We noticed how, when good leadership exists, the top leader models the behavior to those who report to them. Those leaders model the behavior for their direct reports, and so on. It creates the ripple effect of great leadership that leads to belonging.

Here are some steps I took:

  • First, acknowledge emotions. Early in the week I acknowledged the grief my clients were experiencing. I said, “That sounds like you are describing grief. What would you call your feelings?” I acknowledged that I was grieving. I told myself, “It feels like I’m grieving. I need to work on this.”
  • Identify where the emotions show up in the body. For me, I feel tightness in my chest; then my shoulders ache with tension.
  • Find an outlet for the feelings. I used a meditation and visualization I learned recently. I also journaled about the feelings.
  • Rest. I took a nap.
  • Get in touch with nature. I sat outside with my dogs and cats and enjoyed the fragrance of my lilacs and the warmth of the sun.
  • Connect with others. I joined a grief circle. I also phoned friends and relatives to check in with them and talk about our feelings.

How do you acknowledge grief and emotions?

For more information contact Mary Balistreri, The Mindful Business Coach at

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Published by Mary Balistreri

Mary Balistreri offers a variety of coaching and professional development services to individuals and organizations focused on harnessing strengths to develop more business. Mary’s approach is goal driven, focusing on measurable results and developing actionable plans to move past obstacles that hold individuals, teams, and organizations back from executing on the plan. Mary offers expertise in business development, team building, and leadership development coupled with strategies to improve conversational and emotional intelligence to support clients moving toward their goals and aspirations.

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