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From Grief To Growth – Unlocking Happiness Through Emotional Healing

A Trauma Informed Somatic Coach & Embodied Mindfulness Mentor, specialises in uplifting Compassionate Leaders & Changemakers.

Executive Contributor Tana J Cohen

What if I told you that grief is the silent gatekeeper of happiness? This concept might sound peculiar at first, but let’s dive deeper together.

A man at the mountain

Grief occurs when the very heart of you is wounded. You might find yourself masking the scars of the past with distractions such as anxiety, procrastination, addictions, and even positive thinking. There’s nothing inherently wrong with these strategies, except they might not fully address the lingering sense that something is missing.


The constant urge to shy away from discomfort ensures that all the unprocessed and unresolved grief remains confined within you. Grief can be a tender emotion to confront, and likened to a hurt child who needs assurance and safety to weep before its smile can return. The grief within yearns to be acknowledged, yet you tell the child you’re too busy, choosing instead to divert your attention.


It presents a paradox, doesn’t it? The happiness you yearn for resides just beyond the pain you anticipate will be overwhelmingly uncomfortable, thereby amplifying its intensity tenfold through your fear of it. And what is birthed from resistance and fear? Anxiety.


The unseen bond: How grieving unlocks the door to managing anxiety


Anxiety might seem more familiar (and thus safer) than grieving. Whether aware of it or not, we naturally gravitate toward the comfort of what's familiar, even when it's detrimental to our well-being.


Our society is often devoid of genuine affection, where love involves dedicating your time, space, and gentleness to the parts of yourself that are frightened, affirming that it’s entirely okay to feel whatever you’re experiencing.

Decoding habits: How grief and distraction shape our coping mechanisms


The behaviours you dislike and wish you could control actually serve a purpose. They aid in coping because confronting and acknowledging what’s really happening within is unfamiliar, uncertain, and daunting.


Many of these behaviours become addictive due to the dopamine they release, providing the pleasure that follows the pain of desire. Have you ever considered why certain individuals are more susceptible to addictions than others? While genetics play a role, it often boils down to their emotional state.


Those who are more emotionally balanced find it easier to set limits around their dopamine-driven behaviours, whereas individuals dealing with anxiety and unresolved grief rely on these unhealthy habits as a means of seeking temporary relief from their constant inner turmoil.


Unraveling procrastination: The role of avoidance and distraction


The tendency to avoid and distract oneself from what lies beneath powers both addictions and procrastination. It’s not necessary to immerse yourself in pain at every moment; that can be overwhelming and destabilising, especially when you lack healthy ways to regulate yourself in a safe and manageable manner.


Becoming slightly more comfortable with what’s uncomfortable makes everything more bearable in the long run. Signaling to your body that it’s safe to process pain is an act of courage and marks a significant milestone in the healing journey, something I’ve observed in my clients as we progress together.

happy woman at the office

Transforming habits: The power of love and acceptance

What if extending love to what’s uncomfortable is the new ‘mindset hack’ for 2024? You’ve likely heard the saying, “It’s okay not to be okay.” Change is more within reach when you’re fed up with the behaviours that restrain you and are ready to move in a new direction.


If your coping mechanisms stem from avoiding feelings and being present, that’s completely understandable. Facing grief can stop you in your tracks, lacking the sparkle of more vibrant emotions like joy and excitement. Yet, learning to embrace the ‘unembraceable’ within builds resilience and courage, enabling you to overcome obstacles and leave behind whatever no longer serves you in a manner that’s both smoother and free from force.


When you conceal your pain, you inadvertently block your own path to joy.

Acknowledging and embracing your inner grief is not merely a journey of healing; it’s a transition to a more fulfilled and authentically happy self.


A gentle invitation to healing and growth


If the themes of embracing grief and finding growth resonate with you, I warmly invite you to explore more on my website. It's a place where you can gently uncover the steps to transform discomfort into peace and joy, at your own pace.



Your journey towards deeper understanding and authentic happiness can begin today, quietly and respectfully. Visit my website to learn more in a space that honors your individual pace and path.


Tana J Cohen, Somatic Coach & Embodied

Tana J Cohen, a Trauma Informed Somatic Coach & Embodied Mindfulness Mentor, specialises in uplifting Compassionate Leaders & Changemakers. Facing early sibling bereavement, bullying, and neurodivergence, she overcame severe anxiety, panic attacks, C-PTSD, and burn-out. Utilising her experiences, she dedicated her career to aiding others in healing and self-discovery. Tana's approach in Trauma-Informed Somatic Coaching has guided many to deeper serenity and self-awareness. Her extensive training in mental health and wellbeing underpins her successful client transformations. Dedicated to nurturing growth and healing, Tana enables clients to achieve a seamless balance of wellbeing and inner strength.



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