Tag Archives: #mygriefjourney

The Side Effects of Grief

There is no doubt that loss changes us. That fact is indisputable. The loss and resulting grief is and always will be there. And that is the same for every person in this world. No matter who you are, where you live, or what you believe, you will lose someone at some point in your life that is important to you. This is something we all share as humans. 

What is different is the WAY in which it impacts us. The side effects of that loss so to speak. 

Grief is such a profoundly personal experience that I truly don’t feel there is anyone that can truly understand anyone else’s loss. I can only speak to my experience and how my losses have impacted me.

I have had some significant losses in my life and to tally them up, well it is just too much to think about. Some of these losses had minor impacts and those were impacts that were fleeting. 

Others, especially the loss of my daughter, shaped how I view the world. It brought to the surface beliefs that were long buried (the side effect of losing my dad). 

It has given me severe anxiety at the mere thought of something happening to my surviving daughter, grandchildren and spouse. Thankfully, I have my tools to help me with this.

These are what I refer to as side effects of grief and loss. Some good, some amazing, some awful. 

I had noticed another personal side effect and really started to be more aware of it recently.

I feel other people’s pain and suffering for loss stronger than I ever did. I mean, I feel it physically and emotionally. I feel like I am looking straight into people’s heart and soul. I unintentionally take it as my own. 

This happens with people I know and complete strangers.

I see mothers crying for lost children on the news and I cry for them, feeling a fraction of their pain.

I hear a child crying at the loss of a parent and want to hold them.

I see something online about mass deaths and I worry for their friends and family.

A friend loses a parent. I see their pain and I know I can’t make them better. 

Someone loses a pet and I know they are hurting just as much as if it were a human child.

These are all situations that are personal to them, and their grief will be different from one person to the next, but the pain is not really different. I am not saying that I know how they feel, I just know that I can see it and I know the sheer depth of it. 

So, my side effect of grief is empathy and compassion to the extreme. And I am good with it. It’s turning me into the kind of person I always wanted to be and really was on the inside. It’s made me more inclined to give people grace, It has made me far less judgemental and made me take a few steps back to try to understand where others are coming from. And to me, this is a blessing in spite of tragedy.

What is your grief side effect?

Until next time,

Patti

Xo

Gratitude

I woke up today in such a space of gratitude, that it started a chain of feelings and events that made things just start to click in my mind.

I feel like I am finally truly grasping the lessons I took in my daily Unlimited 40 day practice.
When you exist in such a state of being thankful for all that you have in the present moment, it welcomes in to you all that you could ever want.


I have been focusing on how happy I am in my present life:

  • I have a comfortable living space
  • I have a supportive spouse
  • I am tight with my family
  • I have a good job
  • I love writing this blog, it has helped me with so many things
  • I love my super supportive friends

Are there things that are not best in my life that I wish were different? OF COURSE!! But, I choose to focus on that which is good and therefore attract more of that to myself. The Universe will take care of the not so great things.


I have been writing a daily affirmation even when I didn’t truly believe it: My life is really really good. I am happy where I am and reaching for more.


This affirmation has brought me to where I am today, in this moment of happiness, satisfaction and excitement for the future.
It has welcomed a new opportunity in my life that is bringing me so much joy and allowing me to express myself in different ways and leverage my creativity.
I am so thankful for all that I have now, all that has happened to bring me to where I am today and what I will accomplish tomorrow.


What are you grateful for? What words are you speaking to yourself and what impact is this having on your life? Does this need to change?

This process is not something that happens overnight. It is gradual and it requires you to do some work. It’s not hard work but it is something that you must be consistent with. Here are some recommendations based on my findings:


Try incorporating a morning and evening gratitude practice for 30 days. Then, add in a daily positive affirmation for 30.
Observe how this makes you feel and what amazing things start to magically appear in your life.
Then, level that up; thank the universe/angels/god whomever you speak to for something you want in your life as though you already have it.

This is where I am at and it’s amazing what comes your way.
Report back.

Patti
Xo

What are you running from?

Courtesy of Calm app

This quote this morning during my meditation grabbed me. I have faced more than my share of difficulty to put it mildly. And it has all changed me. It’s changed me in so many ways that when I run into people from my past, they are blown away by the transformation. It’s like being reborn.

The reason this quote got my attention today and got me thinking was the last piece…”we just need help in learning how not to run away.”

Powerful shit. I have been guilty of running and hiding all my life until the last little while. I just would avoid dealing with anything uncomfortable. I still struggle with some things but I am light years ahead of where I was.

I remember even as a child avoiding the uncomfortable. Vividly remember actually. Getting invited somewhere by friends, only to be questioned when I arrived as to why I was there. Little girls being mean just to be mean. And me not confronting it. Just mumbling that I must be mistaken and leaving hiding my tears

Being spoken down to as a teenager by a teacher who told me that math just wasn’t my thing. So I dropped the class rather than trying.

Cheated on by my ex husband for many years and not facing it. Turning a blind eye and pretending it wasn’t happening just because confronting it was too painful.

Stuffing down the pain of Kayla’s death because I didn’t feel I had the capacity to deal with it. Not feeling strong enough. Terrified that this would be the one thing that broke me forever.

All of these things are a lifelong pattern of not believing enough in yourself to just deal with it and end your own suffering. Believing that you’re just not worthy. You can spout all the self help and affirmations you want, but you have to face the feelings you have deep within yourself if you want to step into that radiant amazing being you really are.

Mediation has helped me start to emerge from my self imposed cocoon of doubt. Daily affirmations, and physically taking care of myself has also contributed to this. If you want to transform into your true beautiful self, you have to immerse yourself in the work. You can’t half ass it. You need to get in there and see the ugliness that’s there. You have to deal with it all.

You need to learn how not to run away.

Patti
Xo

Your words and thoughts create your reality

I did a post this week on my social media after I had a big epiphany and I thought we should talk about it here because it was so incredibly powerful.

I have been doing alot of self reflection type of work and working on loosening my grip on trying to be in control of literally everything and for a bit, it had me upside down and sideways in my mindset.

The biggest self discovery happened this week:

I figured out that turning 50 messed with me more than I thought it did. 

When I was close to that magic number, my body was suddenly against me, or so I thought. I was gaining weight “for no reason” I “needed’ to move to lower impact workouts because well you know, “I’m getting older and I need to accept that’s where I’m at”. Looking back and reflecting on that, I mind fucked myself. I know that now. I believed that to be true, I said the words and that is the shit I manifested for myself. Wow. Mind blown. LIke seriously?

I found myself eating things that I KNEW my body hated, because what was the point? I’m getting older and you only live once so eat the cake. And yes, eat the cake is a thing that you should do, just not the WHOLE cake.

In the midst of all this shiz, I started doing the Unlimited workbook that I spoke about last week on the blog. Every morning, you read a few pages of information, then you say an affirmation, meditate and you write what you’re grateful for. You also write 3 things you want the universe to achieve for you and then you let that go. This workbook goes for a 40 day period.

Doing this every day really gets you digging in your heart of hearts. You start to see where you are working against yourself simply by thinking or saying things a certain way. 

This was the start of my epiphany. 

Then, I listened to an audio lesson on mindful eating. There are meditations you do to understand why you want to eat and helps you to determine if you really are hungry or if that’s just because you’re programmed that way. There is an exercise to write down how food makes you feel. By the way–mindful eating is really just that, it’s paying attention to your body and your food. It’s still ok to eat a certain way if it makes you feel good or you’re trying to achieve a specific goal. 

This got me thinking about life in general and what makes me happiest. Then, I made a list. I sat there at 5 am and wrote a giant list about what I practice when I am at my best. 

This simple task, showed me in black and white, what I needed to do in order to pick myself fully back up. It’s a few days later and I am back to eating the food that best fuels my body, working out pretty hard core, I’m organized and focused at work and in my personal life and I’m HAPPY! Like so happy. I encourage you to do this activity for yourself and let me know how you feel afterward. 

Patti

xo

Back at it! Sweating it out like a champ!
Yummy fuel!

Time off for self care

Last week, I didn’t blog for the first time since I started this blog. I just wasn’t in the right headspace. I blog to share my story, the good, the bad and the ugly stuff, but I am not willing to write just for the sake of writing..and last week, that is what it would have been. 

I let the world get to me over the past few weeks. I struggled to remain positive. I got dragged down into a shitty spin. It all became too much work: the eating, the mindset, the workouts, the staying positive, the coaching. All of it. 

I think we are all really struggling again with the state of the world. The pandemic variants are creating havoc. In Ontario, we are once again under a state of emergency due to the insane amount of people getting sick. And looking around, it was the attitude of people that got to me. The complacency, the selfishness and the overall attitude. When a shutdown was announced, people were actually quoted on the news that they needed to get their nails and hair done “while they could”. For real. And I allowed that to really drag me down.

Thankfully, I mean really thankfully, I’ve done so much work on my mindset and created some super consistent habits that will always reign that nonsense in. I’m so grateful for meditation. If you do nothing else for yourself in your life, please at least meditate.

Even when I felt the shittiest, I still meditated. What that did was to help me step outside of my mental state and observe where I was at. Eventually, a plan came to me to get out of the funk. 

Here is what I did to pull myself back to, well, myself:

  • I gave something up that was no longer working for me: Beachbody Coaching
  • I kept working out and meditating
  • I meal prepped and planned
  • I booked a day off work and spent my day outside in nature with my camera

That was all it took. 

The first step, ending my coaching relationship with Beachbody was tough. I love coaching. I love their programs. I don’t love that you have to spend so much money to qualify as a coach. I don’t love their restrictions on promotion of other products. I don’t like their sales approach. It’s yucky to me. It felt like–not me. It was a hard decision but needed to be done. I’m still running an accountability group FOR FREE because I love it. It keeps me on track and I love seeing other people’s success. More to come on that group on my social media.

The working out, meditation and meal planning are already habits that are ingrained at this point. No matter what, it’s something that is always done. That doesn’t mean that when I’m struggling I didn’t go to Dairy Queen and I didn’t eat an entire chocolate bunny in a day. It just means that the structure is already there, making it easier to get back fully on track when I’m ready.

The day off work was probably the most valuable thing I did. I got outside. I found so much to love and appreciate in nature. The sun, the new spring flowers and all the little birds and critters. It did WONDERS for my soul. It allowed me to come back and be ME. Patient, positive, loving life ME. 

I feel like this little bird, just living my best life and singing its praises. I pray you all are living life like this bird.

Patti

xo

Shifting Perspectives–Change your Mindset

Why does everything always happen to me?

How does the above statement make you feel? It brings me down and makes me sad. It makes me feel or it implies that all bad things happen to this person and there is no escaping from it. It sounds dismal and negative. It sounds like a punishment that never ends. I immediately feel sorry for this person that is saying this.

Now, take that same statement but change one word: Why does everything always happen for me?

This sounds like revelation. It sounds like self discovery. Like nothing but good things happen for this person. It sounds like the universe, or God or Angels or whatever you believe in is doing this person a FAVOR.

See how easily you can shift things with a very simple shift in your perspective? That was a change of 2 very short 2 and 3 letter words. Crazy but true.

I have been practicing this mindset shift (at least doing my best at it anyway) and it is life altering to say the least. I am in a better mood, and my outlook on life is genuinely more positive and hopeful.

When something happens that we feel is a negative…rather than asking why it’s happening TO us, let’s start asking why it’s happening FOR us. Ask what doors will this open up for me? How does this event or thing change the path I am on? What lesson is this teaching me?

Life is so full of potential with this simple shift. It’s helped me see light in tragedy, and altered my overall view on life, and in turn, my beliefs.

I’d love to see you give this a try yourself. In the coming days/weeks or even months, when a challenging situation arises, or something “negative” happens to you, shift the view to why it’s happening FOR you and see where that takes you.

I bet it’s somewhere awesome.

Patti

xo

What a year!

This week marks the one year anniversary that a global pandemic was announced. We were sent home from work “for a few weeks” and we really thought it would all be over then. Here we are..the world indelibly changed: How we shop, how we work, how we socialize and even celebrate. Looking back, I didn’t see even a twinkle of this coming. So what have I been able to learn and observe this past year personally? Turns out, alot. 

What I learned about myself during a global pandemic:

  1. I was in complete denial about where I was in my grief journey. I honestly thought I was doing well and functioning, which I was, however, life was crazy and we were always doing things so it was easy to bury what was really going on. Getting into a lockdown, with nowhere to go, forced me to deal with the emotions that were right there under the surface. With the use of my mindset tools I have to say I’m in a way better spot than I have been in my entire life.
  2. I am not quite as social as I thought I was. As much as I love people, I enjoyed not having to attend social functions and just being able to slow things down. 
  3. I am super attached to my family. I mean, I knew I was, but now I REALLY KNOW. Being away from them during the lockdowns has been absolute torture. I’m just happy and thankful that between lockdown periods we’ve been able to be together.
  4. I found some hobbies. I love birds and I love photography (and the combination of the two)and I really love writing. Both of these hobbies have been a fantastic creative outlet for me and have been incredibly therapeutic.
  5. I am more productive working from home and I love working from home.
  6. I love shopping online, even for groceries. I would have everything delivered if I could. (we are almost there).
  7. I’m a pet person.
  8. I have awesome cooking and baking skills which have served me well, especially when bread was scarce and everything was closed (no takeout)
  9. I don’t need a gym to get in shape
  10. I am very open to a power greater than myself.

Cool and Awesome byproducts of the pandemic for me:

  1. I started this blog!
  2. I got really dialled in with nutrition and exercise
  3. I got out way more in nature
  4. I got really consistent with meditation
  5. I took long breaks from drinking
  6. I started coaching for Beachbody
  7. I discovered Epicure
  8. I got to spend tons of time with Mike
  9. I appreciate my family WAY more
  10. I get to work from home 
  11. I can identify a lot more birds now
  12. I got a nice camera and I’m getting better at using it
  13. I did multiple puzzles
  14. We did a few road trips and had fun exploring
  15. I reconnected with old friends and found friendship with people that I didn’t realize I would.
  16. I got a new grandson!

The pandemic has been awful in so many ways. So many lives lost. So many businesses lost. So many people are struggling with mental health. Kids not being able to be normal kids. I am not making light. I know that I am so incredibly fortunate to be able to work and be safe and healthy here at home.

 I have been up and down mentally but I chose to write about the positives today because that is what I am choosing to do from a mindset perspective. Let’s focus on the positive so that is what we continue to attract to ourselves.

Is there anything you learned about yourself during the past year? Did you develop a new skill or hobby? Comment and let me know!!

Patti

xo

Older and Wiser?

I had a milestone birthday this week. I turned the big 5-0! Turning this age was not what I was anticipating. I’m not sure what I was expecting…but I was surprised with how I felt about it. I will spare the platitudes: age is just a number and all that nonsense (although it really is). My daughter just kept saying she can’t wrap her head around me being 50, and I have to say I’m with her. I honestly can’t believe it. 

I don’t feel like what I anticipated this age would feel like when I looked toward it from my 20’s, 30’s and even my 40’s. I guess I thought I’d instantly age? Funny how perspective changes once you’re in it. 

I kind of thought that fun life would be all over at 50. Truth is, I’m having more fun (pandemic aside) now than I ever did when I was younger. Here are some of my observations:

I don’t sweat the small stuff

I may go to bed a lot earlier, but I also get up earlier which means I see some pretty beautiful sunrises

I’m way more calm

I don’t give a shit what other people think of me

Things at this stage of my life just feel better. 

I speak up for myself 

I know myself and trust my judgement

I’m an incredibly strong person, I’ve been through so much and yet, here I still am..happy and positive.

So true story here…and the reason why it surprised me that I didn’t freak out about turning this age:

I was always morbidly terrified of growing old, because I was closer to death. So I worried about it alot as a kid, and then well into my 40’s. LIke I legit worried about it almost constantly.

Not long ago, I realized that this mindset was stealing my enjoyment of the present. I attribute a lot of my mindset and being able to enjoy the present to my meditation practice, but I’m betting some of the credit needs to go to getting older and wiser too. 

I guess what I am saying is this: if you’re worried about getting older, please stop. Enjoy where you’re at! I think I’m really going to enjoy exploring my life perspective in my fifties. 

Patti
Xo

When Quitting is Actually Winning

It’s ok to be a quitter. I know that we are taught the opposite growing up, but I’m telling you now, that mindset is toxic.

Now let me clarify. I am not talking here about just giving up on something because it’s too hard, or painful or we just don’t wanna. 

I am talking about quitting things when we know that something has run its course. Ending something that is no longer working for us because we listen to our gut, our intuition, however you want to put it.

Listening to your gut instinct, that’s huge. 

It’s not the easy road, in fact it can be pretty freaking painful, but the end result is ALWAYS worth it.

So how do you know the difference between just giving up before it’s time and knowing it’s right?

That’s a tough question to answer.

I think it comes down to a lot of things. You need to ask yourself some tough questions and really sit and listen to the answers. I recommend sitting in meditation for a few minutes before digging in. 

Once you’re in that calm and neutral state, ask yourself the following things:

  • How is this situation serving me?
  • If I stick with this situation, what do I see the outcome being?
  • Is making a change worth the pain that the change could cause?

You can apply this to any situation really.

Romantic relationships, family, friends, jobs, careers..anything that you may be on the fence about.

Self reflection is a gift to yourself. Why would you want to short change your life?

I am only recently grasping this. I have been in so many situations in life for far too long simply because I didn’t love myself enough to make decisions FOR MY WELL BEING. I literally lived in order to make everyone else happy. Changing from that person to where I am today has taken me to a better place. A place where I’m not afraid to change, or speak my mind.

The situation recently for me was switching off a workout program that I was enjoying. It was actually detrimental to my health when I sat and asked myself those questions. And while it may seem like a totally trivial thing, it wasn’t to me. 

As a Beachbody coach, the expectation is to try all the programs when they come out. My OCD brain says that means complete it. I want to know the programs so I can best serve my clients, But, what cost to myself was I really willing to accept? I was looking at quitting as a failure, when in reality in the grand scheme of things, I only have one body. That one body doesn’t give a shit about Beachbody clients. 

It truly was an aha moment that, although I viewed it as quitting and a failure at first, it was me winning at life.

So, as I go off to do a workout for my mental and physical health, one that is best for MY body, I leave you with this:

What are you putting off quitting?

Patti

xo

Control

The workout program I have been doing is called 9 Week Control Freak. It’s a great physical workout but it’s also strong in messaging about being in control of the things you can. It got me thinking a lot and I’m glad I am doing it because I think it’s needed by everyone given the state of the world around us.

You can’t control everything, but there are many things you can control that you may not think you can.

Let me break it down.

Eating Healthy to support your amazing body: 

Disclaimer: I fully acknowledge there are people with very real Eating Disorders out there. This section may be a trigger and I want you to know there is help out there. For the rest of you:

YOU and only you are in control of the way you eat. You make a choice when you pick up the fork. You make the decision when you pull into Mcdonald’s. You make the choices at the grocery store. I have heard so many reasons that people are not in control of their eating choices. The biggest one is it’s too hard to make different meals for the hubby, or if you have kids, for them too. The reality is, it’s not that hard. First of all, why would you feed your family food you know is harmful to them? Beyond that, you can adapt any meal and make it better for you. I challenge you to do so. The other one is that people don’t have time to cook. Please. Just stop saying that. You do. Trust me. 

Exercising to support your amazing body:

You are in control of that too. You can find an activity you LOVE that doesn’t feel like exercise. Dance in your undies in the kitchen, get a bike, buy a jump rope and relive your youth. No money? No problem. Walking is free. Running is free. Dancing is free. Doing jumping jacks and running on the spot is free. See a theme here? No time? I call bullshit. How much time are you spending on your phone? Netflix? You. Have. Time. 

How you react to situations outside of your control

You and ONLY you control your brain. What a concept!! YOU can tell your brain what to think. This does take time and practice but it’s something you can accomplish. I cannot recommend meditation enough. It is legit life altering when you embrace it. It has taught me to pause before letting my emotions get the best of me. You can then evaluate how you’re feeling in reaction to a situation and then, choose how to react. This applies to all sorts of things: disagreements with others, someone being less than kind to you, crazy world events, work situations. All of that stuff.

I’m being very blunt today, but with this stuff, sometimes you need to be. I for one, am always a work in progress and I’m proud of that. I have chosen to take a learning approach to my life, rather than the old me that would make a “mistake” and then proceed to berate myself for days. 

I’m going to leave it at this list for now, but I am positive I will think of more later, so watch for a part 2 down the road. 

You got this guys. You are in control of YOU. Nobody else. YOU. You rock, get out and show the world how amazing you are. 

Patti

xo