You could be forgiven for thinking LOA and the grieving journey are incompatible.
I don’t buy that.
Law of Attraction is A Thing, just like gravity. You can’t switch it on and off at will.
And I don’t believe that experiencing grief will somehow instantly start attracting bad things.
For a start, I think the Universe gives us a hall pass when we’re moving through grief.
We all came here to have the full human experience, not to do a kind of emotion-ectomy which removes the painful bits.
Sure, it’s possible for us humans to get a payoff from the drama of grieving, which can become addictive and weirdly comfortable, and see us getting stuck there.
And getting stuck there definitely makes it trickier to handle the relationship between LOA and the grieving journey.
But I’ll be honest (and some will disagree with me) – I don’t believe joy is incompatible with grief.
Joy simply looks different, when seen through the lens of grief.
It’s like a pool of sunshine on a cloudy day. It might be brief and rare, but it’s there.
And joy can be made more accessible, without diminishing the essential healing process we experience via the grieving journey.
It’s our job as conscious creators to curate that grieving journey so that we make space for joy.
Not to repress or avoid the grieving journey in an attempt to be in joy 24/7.
Joy in grief needs to be consciously allowed, because many people suppress joy while grieving, as though it is somehow disrespectful or inappropriate. I can remember my Mum and I laughing through the tears at something one of us said, while organising Dad’s funeral. We slightly shocked the nice funeral lady, because she caught herself giggling instead of using the standard hushed and solemn tones. It was a joyous and light-filled moment in a dark time. It did not disrespect our grief for my beautiful and much-missed father – partly because I knew HE would have laughed, too.
Sometimes, joy has to be aspired to and reached for during grief, especially if the process is taking a long time and/or you’re surrounded by people who are continually reminding you of the grieving. I had to carefully avoid certain people after Dad died, because they LERVED the drama of the situation and would drag me backwards in my own grief journey, if I allowed them. I curated my interactions to ensure I had support for moving through, healing and making space for joy.
So the question becomes, how can you curate your vibration to include joy, even as you move through and honour this grieving journey?
Here are some steps you can take.
- Stop judging yourself if you are in pain. Skip the memes which tell you to be happy 24/7. Skip the judgement when you feel tears welling up at inopportune moments. Skip the idea that you cannot ‘do’ LOA and the grieving journey at the same time. Instead, practice actively flowing compassion and empathy towards yourself. Turn kindness inward.
- Check in and see if you have been reluctant or afraid to fully allow the grief, which can slow down the process and make it feel worse, or can even have us getting stuck in grief. Drop any judgement you might have about your unwillingness to allow the grief process, and flow compassion (see point 1.)
- Allow the grief, by finding a time you can be alone and simply BE with it. Allow the tears and the sobs and the stomping and the snot and whatever else needs to be allowed. If you let it flow freely, the grief will most likely show up in small and powerful mini-cyclones of emotion, which pass as swiftly as they arrive. This piece you may need to do more than once, just FYI. And when tears well up, let them. If you need to hold them back temporarily because you’re in a meeting or about to go onstage, of course you can do that. But don’t put it off too long. Take a trip to the bathroom to give the grief space. Gently (or firmly!) push away a well-meaning hug, if it’s coming from someone who hasn’t earned the right to be your compassionate witness. Defend your own boundaries and your process, even if other people find it rude or odd – their response is not your responsibility right now (or ever).
- Ask the question: how can I curate joy, as I move through the grieving process?
Our emotional landscape is a tapestry woven of shifting and dappling sunshine and clouds.
We shouldn’t despise or avoid the clouds.
And we can allow, and consciously aspire to, more sunshine than we might think, without diminishing the importance of the grieving process itself.
We don’t have to let go of joy while we are grieving.
It might just look a little different, that’s all.