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What's Up With You?
It May Be Grief

Recent weeks have been an unexpected roller coaster for all of us. Early news of the possible loss of our freedom to move about caused shock and denial, then anger.  As the sobering reality of the health crisis sunk in, a sense of overwhelm and despair came forth. As we go about making a new normal of this weird reality, we may swing from high (work from home!) to low (work from home…) on an emotional roller coaster.

The comparison to a roller coaster fits the same curves as human grief. Elisabeth Kübler-Ross provides the insight we need as depicted in the curve below.

While originally born from work on the death of a loved one, what we have learned is this same cycle of emotions applies for any loss or change. Whether death, the loss of a job, the furloughing of colleagues, or the loss of access to a fitness facility, all bring about similar waves of emotion.

Depending on the loss and the circumstances of it, the curves can be more pronounced. We may also swing between anger and acceptance before we finally start on the pathway of experimentation to move forward. Feeling stuck or unwilling to take action is the processing before we are enough in acceptance to move forward.

Awareness of the stages of grief allows one self-compassion. When we give that to ourselves, then we can offer it to others. We can look with care at others struggling through these different phases, backsliding on really tough days, and able to appreciate the journey we are all on.

We remain deeply appreciative of our first responders and those on the front lines whose roles require that they soldier forth, with little time or capacity to work through these stages. We will be strong for them when the immediacy of the crisis passes and they then have a chance to emotionally catch up with all they have experienced.  We’ve put together this video to keep their spirits up.

For more go to: https://hbr.org/2020/03/that-discomfort-youre-feeling-is-grief 



COVID19, Leadership Development and Coaching, Leadership Effectiveness, Operational Excellence, Organizational Transformation, Workforce Development

Barbara Stewart Director

Barbara Stewart is an experienced Executive Coach focused on Leadership Development, Team Facilitation and Workshops, Employee Engagement and Professional Development....

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