Labels Don’t Define Us

"Too often we identify with our labels but labels limit us they are not who we truly are"

Labels Don’t Tell the Whole Story

Who you are is not defined by your name or even what you do in life for you are much more. Too often your self- worth is tightly tied to that of your work role or relationship label.

These are jigsaw parts adding color and meaning to the whole of who you think you are. You wear many roles and hats but they aren’t who you are either.

The Sum of the Whole

It’s through your roles and relationships that form the sum of your experiences that shape you.  The cycle of life continues as you grow older and change,  0ften adding new labels as you evolve into the next stage of your life.

Your name is used first to identify who you are and the clan you belong to. You become a son or daughter, sister or brother, girlfriend or boyfriend showing the world more of who you are.  Then you marry and a  new label of husband or wife is given, followed next by mother or father.

No Longer Five

I’m no longer a girl but my age puts me in the category of senior or elder but underneath I’m still me.  The same me I was at 5.  Somehow I got buried under the weight of the labels I used to define me or hide behind.  Doing so gave me a false sense of self-worth.

It isn’t until death or major loss occurs, the great equalizer and it doesn’t matter which label was used it doesn’t stop the cycle of life from occurring.  Underneath we are all too human and with any loss, grief pays a visit and stays for a while, perhaps even a long while.   It is during this time that we have an opportunity to shake off our labels as we are brought to our knees, for truly what do they matter?

A Crisis in Identity

We call out “who am I” when the label no longer fits.

A crisis in identity occurs when we allow our self-worth to be defined by labels.  It is so important that we take care not to do so as our labels can easily be taken away.

Relationships can define us but we can become lost in them.  Often meshing and melding with “others” in our lives to fit in. We do this also to be loved and feel loved.  Each time we do so another piece of us is lost.

When someone or something is taken from us we hurt, we’re upset and a temper tantrum at the injustice is thrown.  It is now we must learn how to live our lives without the person and our label attaching us.   This is your opportunity to rediscover the YOU underneath.  The one that got buried living life.

You may feel broken and worn down by this experience but there is a part of you that is always whole, is always you.  It is simply waiting to be discovered again, dusted off and brought out into the sunlight to play and to dream again.

This is what grief coaching does, it helps you find YOU after a loss.

If you’re ready to explore – please call me.  Let’s talk because your life is waiting for you but needs your participation.

 

 

 

 

Addiction, Shame & Grief – Interview with Sarah Roberts

Whenever we’re faced with challenges in our lives, it can be easy to give up.  Its a choice, it’s your willingness to work through them and heal.  It is then your greatest gifts and passions show up.  You don’t have to hit the proverbial “rock bottom” before deciding this isn’t working. It can be one event that triggers the need for some other direction in life to be taken.

In the interview, We Cover…

How Sarah’s need for connection, to fit in led to addiction.  Her recovery through healthy food and entering grief when her dad, mentor, and supporter died. Sarah Roberts, a TV host, and producer speaks openly and from the heart, about subjects many find hard to talk about.

In this open and candid interview with Sarah, we delved into these topics:

  1. How and why her passion, cooking and creating using real, whole foods began.
  2. Her purpose is Sarah’s successful One Bite at a Time (OBAAT) coaching helping others find freedom from food, sugar, alcohol, and body image issues that have kept them stuck.
  3. Shame helped her create her own healthy life-style and how speaking about her own shame gives others permission to own their own.
  4. We are wired for the need to connect and what this need is creating in our children in our social media reality
  5. Sarah’s own journey with grief when her dad died suddenly.  How she and her brother have coped differently over his passing
  6. Her thoughts on the statement readily used in Society “you never get over your grief”
  7. Good self-care is necessary especially when you are struggling with your appetite.  Some suggestions of what foods to include in your diet and why.

To listen to this episode in the Let’s Talk About Grief Podcast – you can from Apple Podcast download it here 

or here if you prefer Spotify

 

Poems from Beyond – Interview with Liza Ferrara DeStefano

Grief is universal, but individually we all have our own unique way of handling our grief.  Liz Ferrara DeStefano found very quickly after the death of her father, her own way was to create poetry.  The words would come to and the poems were born.

Liza wonders if she did grieve enough, she feels she did, her heart no longer broken, admits she feels sad and does miss her Dad but the poetry helped her process her loss.

These are some of the topics we covered

  • How soon after your Dad’s death did you discover your creativity had been awakened?
  • What is it about this activity that worked so well for you?
  • Have your poems helped your family members?
  • How many poems have you written?
  • You are now a published author
  • Did you publish them as a legacy to your Dad or as part of your healing journey?

Liza’s poems not only helped her with her grief but have helped others she has shared or written them for. In creating her poems she feels she is connected to her Dad and this brings her comfort

It doesn’t always have to be painful or anguish but a quieter letting go, and into acceptance.  When you listen to Liza’s story, you will find that family connection, closeness and supporting each other are what helped this family navigate their loss, their Dad, a husband, and grandfather.  They are all changed in many ways and these changes have brought the family closer together.

 

 

 

Bell’s Let’s Talk campaign is on to

Yes, Indeed, Let’s Talk

This truly is a brilliant way to have us talking about Mental Health which affects so many and what better way to bring a topic that has been in the shadows for so long out and shed light upon it?

Let’s come together to find ways to help each other cope with depression or schizophrenia and the myriad of other symptoms our Mental Health professionals deal with daily.

One way is to talk about it so that the stigma of having a mental disorder is lessened.  There are so many people suffering because they don’t want to Talk about It out of fear and shame. Time for less judgment.

Clearly more needs to be done but this is a great way to create awareness.

Long-standing Grief & Depression

Another awareness I’d like to create is how grief can add a person to this ever-growing list for those requiring professional help.  Grief if not dealt with can result in severe depression or suicide.  It can sap a person’s life for years after the death occurred.  Grieving is a full body response weakening the immune system and causing health issues.

Not everyone grieving will end up with severe depression or with the symptoms outlined above.  However, that is yet another topic to be discussed and explored.

As science advances unlocking the knowledge to help explain why some mental health issues occur can we then take steps to help prevent the onset.

Mindfulness, breathing, exercise, walking or journaling are some of the tools being used.  Reframing and working on mindset are yet others. Eating healthy and getting more sleep.  Learning to relax and taking days off our electronic devices are just some examples of techniques being implemented or suggested.

Giving our brains a chance to daydream and take time out is another.

However, nothing is ever quite as simplistic and if you feel you grieving and have been for a while please seek professional help.

Regardless of grief, reach out to someone you know and talk to them about what you are noticing.  A simple kindness, someone to speak to can make the world of difference.

 

Please let’s talk……..

 

As a grief coach, I am available. Please Chose life and Chose you because we are all here to make a difference in someone’s life.

 

 

My Best Friend’s Funeral

How I Supported my best friend through her end of life transition – Jane Jackson Soul Coach and Energy Practioner (to read more about Deborah & Jane’s journey together here is the link)
https://www.thriveglobal.com/stories/28498-my-best-friends-funeral

When Faced with Difficulty

What do you do, when your best friend is diagnosed with MS and possibly has two years to live?  This was what Jane was faced with and this interview is about their journey together.  Jane did what you would expect of a good friend, she jumped in to support her in so many ways.  Helping her with daily living, supporting, planning her funeral together and dealing alone with the rawness of it all.

This journey was an emotionally charged one, instead of closing down they remained open, vulnerable and available to each other.  Jane never judged her friend or tried to talk her out of it when she heard she was choosing suicide to end her life.  For Deborah, wanted to leave on her terms and not be defined by her illness as she progressively got weaker.

However, the is an interesting and heartwarming twist to their story.  One that will have you questioning “Is the choice to die really ours to make” or is there something more powerful at work here.”

Listen now to their story.