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Friday Connections Recap - 5/22/2020 - Grief

As we enter a period of renewal and change, Your Clear Next Step is committed to helping our customers make their businesses and workdays even better. We will be here to walk beside you, to listen, to connect, and to aid in your search for clarity.  In doing so, we are offering a free, weekly Zoom calls, called Friday Connections, at 1:15pm (CDT) every Friday from 5/8/2020 - 8/7/2020.

These calls are a chance for us to share tips and discussion about relevant topics (working remotely, maintaining consistency in uncertain times, building relationships across geography, staying motivated, staying connected, etc) and network with each other to provide help and support during this time of change.

Thank you to everyone who was able to join us today! Click here to join our next call on Friday, May 29th at 1:15pm (CDT). 

On today's call...

Sinikka talked about grief.

It’s not a particularly uplifting topic in and of itself, but it’s something we all experience at one time or another, and it has the potential to impact our interactions with one another. 

Elisabeth Kübler Ross (EKR) developed the Stages of grief (which went from 5 to 7) shock, denial, anger, bargaining, depression, testing, and acceptance. Originally written as an explanation of the common experiences of patients with terminal illnesses, it was eventually applied to the family and friends of those individual, and then a bunch of other places. I’m familiar with it because of my work in change management where HR professionals once touted “all change is like a death.” 

One of the truths of grieving is that we don’t all process grief the same way.  

Things we know for sure:

  • we’ll all have something to grieve at some point in our lives
  • we’ll all grieve differently
  • using words like EKR's "stages" help us put words around our emotions which helps us manage them
  • it's common for grief to include some shock and/or denial, some sadness, and that eventually it leads to some level of acceptance 

Interestingly, there are people who are pre-grievers (who grieve in advance of the known or anticipated ending) and people who are post-grievers (who grieve after an ending has taken place). This is important because when a team is dealing with grief, the grieving process will last from the first tear of the earliest pre-griever to the last tear of the latest post-griever, which can take years.

Why does it matter? 

There is a lot to grieve right now, from the deeply profound to the smaller but no less sad. 

  1. If someone is out of character, is it grief? 
  2. If you are acting out of character – is it grief? 
  3. If you or someone else are going through grief 
    • there’s no one way to do it 
    • it’ s  a process which means it takes time 
    • it’s very personal which means it’s a great chance for us to connect as humans 

A few thoughts that were shared by the group:  

  • One participant was appreciative of the timeliness of this topic. They are dealing with things in their life that may be grief
  • A few participant are trying to be nice on themselves for not cleaning out their house as much as they'd like
  • One participant shared their struggle with allowing themselves to feel grief, and not shut it down because of what they do have
  • One participant thought they were done grieving the loss a major event, but they realized they are still dealing with it
Sinikka headshot 2017

About the Author

Sinikka Waugh

Sinikka Waugh is a recognized leader in understanding people and in adapting tools, techniques, and processes to meet the demands of the situation at hand. Since 2006, Sinikka has provided compassionate leadership in transformation initiatives. When she isn’t in front of a class, she enjoys putting her background in English and French Literature to work, by writing blogs about the subjects she teaches every day.


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