The Inner Game of Stress: Q & A with Marcia

Q. How does one help someone in grief? Can the stress of material / financial loss kill a person?

A. Before rushing off in her car, my neighbor informs me that she just received an emergency call from her 27 year-old daughter, asking her to come over right away. The daughter was just informed that her close girlfriend had died of a heart attack. Apparently, the young woman (who passed away) started having chest pains a few days ago, after receiving a ‘pink slip’ from her workplace. She was informed that her job was ending due to the company’s decision to outsource her position.

No doubt, added stress can and does kill people. No job or money stress is worth the ticket of a life. Obviously, sadness is a natural response to any actual or perceived loss. I teach a body-based, emotional processing technique that sees, acknowledges and honors each feeling that comes our way. In practicing this self-honoring process, most emotions will come to rest more easily. However, when sustained grief reactions begin to compromise body-mind functioning, pay attention. Unresolved grief-loss can increase thoughts of self-attack. It can turn into a full-blown declaration of inner warfare.

When this happens, it’s best not to go it alone. Unraveling the elements of grief and loss requires diligent monitoring and extreme self care, over time. If you or a loved one is experiencing uncomfortable levels of stress (including grief), reach out immediately to a qualified buddy, ideally a professional expert who knows the body-mind terrain map. To save time (and possibly your life), choose an experienced ‘grief guide’ who can deliver the necessary relief package. An experienced guide can teach you self-healing tools that help now and can continue to aide you for the rest of your life.

For an experienced example, my colleagues have written a helpful book on the topic of stress and finding practical solutions, The Inner Game of Stress: Outsmart Life’s Challenges and Fulfill Your Potential. Over the past five years, I’ve been working with the medical team–Dr’s Edd Hanzelik & John Horton along with Timothy Gallwey, who has produced a series of bestselling Inner Game books & seminars that have helped thousands of people find better ways to manage change. I’ve found their book has become a very helpful resource.

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