Finding a way through the storm

March 24, 2019 Sandra Dawes

My dog Lulu died last Monday. She was 13 years old and started suffering from arthritis this winter. When she collapsed and couldn’t get up, I knew her time had come. That didn’t make it any better and my partner and I were devastated. It hasn’t quite been a week yet, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss her like crazy, even though I know that it was the best thing for her.

This isn’t a tribute post to my dog. This is me sharing how I’m managing to still stay focused on my goals through my grief. I had a webinar scheduled for Thursday on 5 Challenges to Achieving Your Goals (and how to overcome them). I was tempted to postpone it because I wasn’t sure if I would be able to do it. My fear was that I would do the presentation and be caught by a wave of grief and break down. I decided to do it because it’s important that I practice what I preach, and finding a way through this difficult time presented me with the opportunity to do just that.

If there’s one thing that I have learned in these last few days, it’s that having a goal to focus prevents the negative emotions I’m experiencing from swallowing me whole. This isn’t to say I’m ignoring my feelings of grief. I have slowed down and am taking time to process my grief. I’ve shed tears. I find myself feeling melancholy. It’s been over 20 years since I didn’t have a pet of some kind in my home. It’s very quiet here at the moment.

I’m grateful that I have goals that are important to me right now. They keep me busy and so I’m not spending too much time in my head. We hear so much about the importance of knowing our “why” and it can all seem a bit cliché. I get it. It’s not just a cliché there is value in it. When your why is big enough, you will find away through life’s challenges. Giving up is not an option. You find a way to keep going, even when it hard. You know that the feelings your currently experiencing will pass.

We all experience challenges. Their severity may vary, but the feelings that bring can be overwhelming. The key to finding our way through those difficult times is finding something else, something positive to focus our time and energy on. It is possible to do this and still honor the negative emotions we’re experiencing.

Stifling the negative emotions we experience is never a very productive way to move forward. You might be able to push them down for a while, but they always find a way to make there way back to the forefront. We have to find a way to move through those emotions without getting stuck along the way.

There are many ways to work your way through the challenges we experience. We can journal, meditate, pray, go to therapy, or confide in a trusted friend. If you need help to work through it, seek it. I think one of the most important things to remember in challenging times is that we don’t have to go through it alone.

Remember that no matter how rough things might seem right now, there is always a way through it. You just need to have tools and techniques to weather the storm. What’s in your toolkit?

If you’re looking for tools and techniques to overcome obstacles, consider joining my Hurdle Jumping: 101 course staring Monday April 8! Visit for more information and to register.

march, 2021

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