Sometimes loss is so devastating it sends you into a seemingly never-ending downward spiral. Do you often find yourself descending into darkness rather than looking for the positive ray of sunshine present in every situation?

Try to remember that every event in life is neutral. It is neither good nor bad, positive nor negative, happy nor sad. It is you, and your response, which gives meaning to the event.

I do not mean to minimize the death of a spouse, or any loss for that matter. However, you can look at the “event” as the most horrible thing that happened to you, or it can be seen as a closing of one door and the unlimited possibility of new doors to open and explore.

Grieving is a very necessary process, and there is no time limit on how long it should take you to recover. It is a personal decision. However, please know in your heart, it should not go on indefinitely. At some point in time, you have to start looking forward rather than backwards.

This does not happen in one fell swoop. It is gradual and moves in baby steps. One day you will turn around and realize how far you have really come.

In my own instance, it took me five years to truly believe I had reached solid ground. These five years were not spent idly waiting for my grief to end. Moreover, this is not to say that I grieved the same each day over this time period. I kept moving forward, pro-actively working on the issues that bothered me.

Many times, I thought I had resolved my grief, only to find another issue lurking around the corner just waiting to push me back. Again, perception comes into play. One can look at problems as insurmountable and something to fear or one can say — “Oh goody, another problem to solve!” Just think of the power with which we can infuse ourselves when we figure out what went wrong and then are able to figure out how to fix it.

We are all beings of energy. We have the power to surge forward in our lives and fill it with happiness, love, and success. Keep in mind, though, if we emit negative energy, negativity will find us. If we emit a fear of living and trusting again — guess what? — we will attract fearful and mistrustful situations.

If you are always angry, you will attract angry people to you. If you feel sorry for yourself, then others will too. If you think there will never be another person with whom you will connect, it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.   Give yourself a gift this holiday season. Take time off from being sad and lonely, mad at the world, apprehensive about the future, and any other negative thought you may have. Wear a smile on your face and project positive energy, and you may be surprised at what life has in store for you!

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Ellen Gerst

Ellen Gerst is a Life Coach who specializes in grief and relationships, an author, and speaker. Widowed young at the age of 39, she writes from a “been there/done that” perspective. Losing her husband to suicide after 20 years of marriage set her on a path to finding her true self and the inner strength she possessed. She shares both her journey and her perspective on how to move gracefully and successfully through the grief journey. She is the author of “Suddenly Single," which is a compendium of articles covering the practical, emotional and spiritual aspects of the grief journey. She went on to capture the continuation of her story in the sequel to "Suddenly Single," aptly named: “Love After Loss: Writing The Rest of Your Story.” “Love After Loss” is a blueprint on how one can find new love after the loss of a partner from death, divorce, or break-up. It includes coaching exercises; how to Internet date; and how to have a healthy and successful relationship – all intertwined with true life dating tips and stories. Ellen has penned many other books on coping with grief, as well as others on such subjects as dating and relationships, caregiving for aging parents, spirituality, confidence building, the power of positive thought, suicide awareness, teen pregnancy prevention, fitness and weight loss, and social media and networking. She is also the co-editor of an anthology of real life changing stories, “Thin Threads of Grief & Renewal.” The stories tell of untold grief and how each author found personal renewal after his/her great loss. It is an inspirational volume for those mourning any sort of loss. To listen to Ellen's radio show: Click Here Visit Ellen on her website at where she has various free downloads on coping with grief and finding love after loss. Join Ellen on Facebook for every day tips on finding love after loss and coping with grief. Finding Love After Loss Words of Comfort To Pave Your Journey Of Loss

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