There are so many things that happen over the course of life that teach us that goodbyes are inevitable. From sad experiences like losing a job, your car, financial security, a loved one, animal and much more. But not all goodbyes are sad. Some goodbyes are easier than others and some are necessary. Unexpected or planned grief from goodbyes is normal and common. You will see that there are many reasons someone may have a problem adjusting to letting go regardless of the life category. You are not alone. It may not be easy and that is okay. Loss comes with some sort of pain which leaves you to have to transition and adjust. Take this opportunity to recognize what you are experiencing and identify your feelings for what they are. There is no one way to say goodbye, which means that everyone’s process of saying goodbye will be different and there is no correct order as emotions will fluctuate. In this tip you will learn about some different reasons people may say goodbye and some of the emotional struggles that are experienced due to dealing with goodbyes.
Here are some TIPs for saying Goodbye
1. Accept that the loss is real.
2. Recognize that the mixed emotions you are experiencing are normal.
3. Learn how to put those feelings into words.
4. Identify why it is causing you so much pain, so then you can work on adjusting.
5. Be good to yourself, goodbyes are life changing and require time and space to adjust and move forward.
Goodbye to unhealthy eating habits: You or maybe even your physician has decided that to improve your health you must get rid of the sweet and salty treats in your life. You may have agreed because it is to improve your health. But now you are experiencing these cravings and mixed emotions of discomfort or disbelief ‘it’s too hard I do without it’, guilt ‘I am supposed to be eating healthy and I just ate a family size bag of chips to myself’, bargaining ‘a little won’t hurt, I’ll remember to add extra vegetables to my plate during dinner’, frustration you may feel that you are unsuccessful and that the change of eating habits is not working and that things will not get any better, it’s just a phase. When you become hard on yourself and are honest with what is going on you will be able to gradually take the necessary steps needed. You will at this point have accepted that change needs to be made and be motivated, which will allow you to continue trying to push through this change and allow more comfort as progression takes place. You have to be honest with yourself. Do not do everything at one time. Take steps to make this change more effective and better for you.
Goodbye to the game station: So, you no longer have the game station. Maybe it is broken, or maybe it has been taken. You are having a hard time accepting and you may even be showing or acting on this emotion. You are probably going through statements like ‘if I did’ I would still have it. When time has settled a little, you may begin trying to make a deal or expressing physically or verbally your disagreement. Gain control of yourself. . You may feel down and go, ‘this is really happening, it's real’ which can feel crushing. Once you realize that you are not getting it back and the severity of the issue you begin to readjust to life taking the necessary steps to move forward and work on yourself.
Goodbye to financial security: Losing a job that provided this security unexpectedly can result in discomfort, mourning. You may have been told that the company after so long is closing, moving or you may have been fired. When losing a job you may feel that you in some ways were the blame, and may even try to bargain with them to keep you. Pick up your dignity. At this point you are terribly upset, or even crushed. It may be hard to get through your day to day, that is if you even decide that you are getting out of bed today. You are being too hard on yourself. Stop it. When you realize that you have been hard on yourself and have found a little peace and are ready for change you will have strength to put in those job applications, go to interviews. You realize at this point that losing that job was not all that bad; it has given you the opportunity to explore and adjust accordingly and allows you to continue working on yourself.
Losing your car: Did your engine go? One half or both? Or was it the transmission? Do the repairs for the car cost more than what the car is worth? Or was it totaled in an accident or repo? It has gotten you back and forth to work, kids events, parties, grocery shopping and the many other things that you may have used your car for. And now it is gone, and you do not know what to do. You vowed when you got your car that you would ‘never take a bus again’. Your independence is gone and now you are experiencing emotions that you do not understand outside of anger or discomfort, because maybe you didn’t even recognize the dependency that was there for that vehicle that made you independent. Either way it all hurts. There may have been more that you could have done or maybe it wasn’t. This is where you are at right now and anger has arisen, now it’s the bus, taxi, Uber or Lyft. Your independence you had you feel is gone. And now you feel you must rely on another person, and that is leaving you feeling frustrated. After dealing with some of those difficult negative emotions you find motivation and begin working through making changes, progressing and being able to reason with the lost and maybe even identify some positives as you deal with your reality.
Relationship endings (divorce, separation, friendships, terminal illness, death): Some of these endings may have been foreseen, because things had been changing through the course of the relationships, which may have resulted in no resolve. And then some endings may not have been expected, so there was no way to try and prepare. With or without preparation these losses can still take you through stages of mixed emotions. Each relationship ending can lead to sadness, discomfort and mourning. You may feel that you were the blame or could have changed something to make the relationship better and realizing this and that there is no going back can deepen the pain possibly leading to a form of aggression, resentment, or anger. This may lead to emotions of feeling crushed, or even depressed. When you are feeling that you have found more peace with the situation and can see more into the future without the person you lost you will find strength to begin reconstructing your life by making needed adjustments and as time progresses you will have more hope for yourself and the ability to find comfort with this relationship's end.
Saying goodbye is never easy when you realize that who or what you are saying goodbye to will not be back. You will feel like you are on a roller-coaster ride of emotions as you are trying to find peace and acceptance. People never really realize until it is too late that everything and one has an expiration date. Then it becomes a phase of having to accept that this loss is real and that there is no turning back, only moving forward. But this all takes time and is all normal whether liked or not. The difference is the position you take in being prepared with tips and tools so that accepting and adjusting are not as crushing emotionally. These tips can be seen being used all in one scenario at one time and overtime as you are readjusting to the changes that come your way. Give yourself time, that is all that you can do.
If you are interested in building your coping skills, schedule an appointment with one of our therapists today.