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Ways to be with a Hurting heart

As a whole, our culture doesn't talk much about grief. And this is in regards to grief that is acceptable such as the loss of a loved one. We often aren't given grace or permission to express all the other ways loss creeps into our lives. It could be as simple as a friend who ghosted you, a dream job that didn't pan out, or a truth you'd rather not acknowledge, just to name a few.

Here are ways to be with your hurting heart. Ways you can turn to when invisible, difficult feelings long to be made visible.

1. Give yourself permission to feel what you need to or pause if your heart needs rest.

Try your best not to judge what you are feeling. How you feel isn't meant to be controlled or changed. Give yourself permission to feel what hurts to the extent that you are able. Don't beat yourself up if you don't have the bandwidth right now. Acknowledge you are carrying some unprocessed hurt and make a promise to revisit it when you have more space in your life.

2. Mix in stretches of stillness with distractions.

Healing looks different every day. Sometimes halting everything and watching hours of HGTV are what's needed (true story!), other days stillness practices like yoga, meditation, or journaling feel supportive. You decide what serves you. Listening to what you need and finding ways to meet those needs is a powerful way to heal your soul from the inside out.

3. Express your grief in creative ways.

Anything that requires hand-eye coordination is healing. Coloring, painting, knitting, gardening, baking, ... the making of something gives your aching heart and mind a break. Creative breaks will heal you.

4. Speak it, write it, share it.

Write a letter to a lost dream, take a beach walk with a trusted friend to air out your soul, journal through to the other side of your pain, all ways to get your heart seen and heard. Most of the time we are not in need of being fixed, we are in need of a witness. If you aren't sure who to trust, be your own witness. Love yourself through it all.

5. Normalize, normalize, normalize.

It can be unsettling to admit that we are sad about something when the world around us wishes us to be continuously sunny and resilient. Being sad is normal. It's the price we pay for handing our hearts and hopes over to an unknown fate. Remind yourself true joy originates from honesty. The more honest you can be about the hard stuff you are carrying, this will give you a deeper capacity for joy.

Like two sides of a golden coin, you never know where the emotions of your heart may land.

Honor both.

Love both.

Be both.

Inward & Onward,

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Thank you for reading!


Feb 12, 2023

Loved #3 Diana…thank you! Leah and I did Painting with a Twist last year and it was just what my soul needed at the time. It was planned as just a “nice time“ out and something different - but the process of creating something n laughing at ourselves in the process had true healing properties. Can’t wait to see what else your readership recommends!

Diana DeVaul
Feb 12, 2023
Replying to

Creativity unlocks something in us that defies explanation. I love that you painted! I’ve been going to art workshops here and I always feel inspired afterwards.

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