My new book Gifted By Grief is out NOW!

Gifted By Grief is finally out! here I am with Robert Holden (who wrote the wonderful foreword):
And here is a doodle of what I feel like doing – standing on the top of a high mountain, telling the whole world about it!

You are getting to hear about it first, as you’re on my mailing list.

(What you also need to know is that next week on 8/9/10th September, the e-book version will be FREE!  This is because I really want to get it out to as many people as possible. (I will send out a reminder re this).But it’s for sale right now, e-book and paperback, so if you can’t wait to take a peek, visit here!

You know, death and dying have never had good press, although that is beginning to change, but grief is lagging behind. That’s a large part of the motivation behind this book – to invite people into my life while it was going on. I hope it will help people become more comfortable with grief, whether they are experiencing it themselves or affected by someone else going through it.

It’s a hugely personal book, and yet oddly, I feel somehow detached from it. Like I just have to serve it.  It’s as if this book has a life of it’s own, and all I have to do is obey it’s instructions. Right now, that’s get this book out to as many people as possible. So that’s what I’m doing 🙂

Please join me by passing on this link to anyone else you know:

Thank you!

I am obsessed – with death.

Ok, I hold my hand up.  I am obsessed.There is only one thing on my mind, it takes up all my thoughts, my creativity and my life at the moment. It’s not a subject that many people search for on Google, nor talk about in ‘polite’ (or even impolite) society. Nor is it even a common topic amongst the holistic or new age community.But it needs to be talked about!  So what is it?

It’s the one thing that affects every single living person or thing on this planet. Yes, you’re right – it’s death.

End of life. Passed on. Departed. Crossed over. Gone to heaven. Taken by the angels. With God.

We have numerous euphemism for this word that so many are so uncomfortable with.

But here it is, it’s my obsession.

Is that because my book Gifted By Grief: A True Story of Cancer, Loss and Rebirth is about to be published (Sept 8th, by the way)?  Yes, but not just that.

I really believe that if we all can talk more easily about this thing that affects us all, then we can become less fearful of it. We need to welcome this elephant into the room, well and truly.

Because it is what I am obsessed by right now, you get to hear about it too. It’s a huge topic, and I will be talking about various aspects of this and how it affects our lives for the next few weeks in the run up to my book launch.

But in this post, let’s just begin by looking at some of the different ways that death happens in business. Of course it can be the biggie, when your business goes bust, or you are forced into bankruptcy. But there are numerous other kinds of deaths that happen every day in business, because death is perceived in our culture as an ending (even though it’s also a beginning).

  • When a client ends their contract with you, that’s a death.
  • When you complete a task, that’s the end of it.
  • When someone says no to you, that’s the end of a possibility in that form.
  • When you rebrand, or update your website, you have to say goodbye to the old one. That’s a death too.
If you begin to think about death as an ending, which by its very nature means a beginning too, then perhaps it can become easier to talk about.You have to be sensitiive, of course, if you are talking about the ending or death of a loved one, or a pet. You definitely don’t want to emphasise that there is a beginning just after the death has occurred.But this sensitivity applies to business too.

Next time a client ends with you, take a moment to be with that loss. If a project you are on comes to a close, recognise it, give thanks and be with that for a while. If you’re changing what you are offering to people, there’s room there for an acknowledgement of what went before.

When we are willing to be with what is in the moment, whether that be death, endings or whatever, it’s a lot easier to move forward in the future.

PS. And if you want to be the first to hear about when Gifted By Grief: A True Story of Cancer, Loss and Rebirth is ready, sign up here. You’ll get the prologue and first two chapters free as a taster 🙂

London Bombings, Grief and Taking a Stand

In the wake of the tenth anniversary of the London bombings I’m writing this to anyone still affected by grief after a long time.

Ten years and two days ago, a horrific thing happened, which hardly bears thinking about, even now. It affected many people, not just those caught up in the incident themselves.

When tragedy strikes in the unexpected manner in which it did in the 7/7 London bombings, it is, of course, appalling. The shock, horror and all other emotions are overwhelming. Some may have come through this and become stronger as a result. Others may still be struggling, even years on.

My heart goes out to you if this is the case; I cannot imagine what it must have been like if you were a direct victim of the bombings, or a family member of someone who died, or someone who witnessed the suffering of those affected.

I do, however, know what it feels like to have a husband die from cancer (no comparison I know, and not intended to be). What I’ve discovered, though, is that in the grieving there is a gift to be found.

If you find yourself reacting to this statement, then maybe you are still hiding from your gift. Let me tell you about what I discovered.

I found my gift as a result of my husband’s death, there is no doubt about it.

I was propelled into an obsession with discovering what it is that is in a body that makes it alive one moment, and dead the next. Everything else was irrelevant.

As I watched my husband move from breathing to no breathing, I began to need, with a burning passion, to find out what it was that had been in the ‘filled skin-and-bones bag’ that had now become an empty bag before my eyes.

The life had been literally sucked out of him, leaving behind just a lifeless body, like a deflated balloon.

Discovering that we are not a body was a profound moment of realisation.

When you know beyond doubt that you are not a body, and neither is anyone else, then when the body dies it does not matter quite so much.

A heretic statement, maybe, and it certainly doesn’t take away the pain and sorrow of the loss. But it gets to be experienced in a different way.

Because when your thinking has turned upside down, and you realize that the body, with all its thoughts, feelings and sensations, is just a temporary home for who you really are, instead of your identity being solely housed in your body, then you awaken to moments of being.

Those are eternal; not subject to the laws of time, and allow connection with those that have died.

You may have found the gift in your grief already, whatever it is for you.

It may be nothing to do with not being a body. But if you haven’t found your gift, then I invite you to consider getting curious about what a body really is.

To explore this and discover for yourself that perhaps you and your loved one really are just a breath away.