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The 5 Stages of Grief and the Journey of Forgiveness

Being newly single can be a difficult journey, filled with pain, heartbreak, and the need for forgiveness. Whether you have gone through a divorce, ended a long-term relationship, or simply found yourself single again, it is natural to experience a wide range of emotions as you try to heal and move on. One of the most challenging aspects of this journey is learning to forgive yourself and others.

Denial: When the initial shock of your situation wears off, it is common to enter a state of denial. You might find yourself trying to rationalize your situation or pretending that everything is fine when you know that it is not the case. During this stage, it is important to acknowledge your feelings and allow yourself to grieve as suppressing your emotions will only delay the healing process.

Anger: As reality sets in, it is natural to feel angry. This anger can be directed toward yourself, your ex-partner, or the world around you. Instead of denying this emotion, allow yourself to feel it and express it in a healthy way. Whether that means screaming into a pillow, talking to a therapist or trusted friend, or writing down your frustrations, processing your anger is an important part of the journey of forgiveness.

Bargaining: During the bargaining stage, you might find yourself trying to make deals with yourself or others to change the outcome of your situation. This could include promising to change certain habits or behavior patterns or begging your ex-partner to give you a second chance. However, it is important to realize that bargaining is often a futile exercise.

Depression: As you begin to accept your situation, it is common to experience a period of sadness and depression. This could be marked by feelings of hopelessness, lack of motivation, and a loss of interest in things you used to enjoy. While it is important to allow yourself time to grieve, it is essential to remember that things will get better. Consider talking to a mental health professional – therapy can often be helpful during this stage.

Acceptance: The final stage of grief is acceptance. As you come to terms with your situation, you will begin to feel a sense of peace and closure. You might find that you are able to look back on your past relationship with more clarity and understanding, at which point, forgiveness becomes a real possibility. Focusing on self-care and positive healthy outlets can help with acceptance.

Healing and forgiveness after a major life change is never straightforward. Pain, grief, and anger are normal parts of the healing process, and these feelings will eventually subside. Forgiveness is a journey, not a destination, and it can take time and effort to work through the five stages of grief. Most importantly, be kind to yourself, surround yourself with positive people, like the members of our She Posse FB group, and consider seeking professional advice and support through workshops like our upcoming Igniting Your Superpower Workshop on August 30 or private sessions.

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