Are you in a state of confusion? Have you made the decision that you will get through this loss? Are you confronting your loss and fears? If not, why not?

Peace of mind is the ultimate goal of good grief so that one can begin the work of reinvesting in a life in the absence of the physical presence of the deceased. Peace of mind is also an inner strength that has both emotional and biological value of immense proportions. From it flows unexpected joy and a new energy base. But how can a mourner get it in the turmoil of grieving?

Even though you may be grieving, everyone has the capacity—regardless of background or experience—to obtain this precious commodity. Inner peace is not only one of the tasks of your grief work, it is the foundation for adapting to perpetual change. Here is one proven approach to consider in this quest.

1. It all begins with desiring it; really wanting it 100 per cent (not, 50, 75, or 98 percent). If you decide yes, it becomes one of the highest priorities of daily life. This intent is essential. You will base decisions on what is important for you to challenge or to let go of. And, you will be more open to learning what others have accomplished in order to find inner peace. Be aware that there is great wisdom out there in the experience of others. Recognize that peace of mind is an ongoing work in progress, not something you “get” and do not have to maintain.

2. Take a personal time-out each day. For most, this is the most difficult part of finding peace because it means cutting into the rapid paced living style that is characteristic of western culture. Look at your daily schedule and find a way to spend 20 minutes just for yourself. Get away from it all, the telephones, radio, and television. Seek the solitude you deserve. Listen to soothing music or visualize your favorite nature view as you are lying down with your feet elevated on a pillow.

3. During reflection time, review your past life for what you are grateful for. Another key piece of inner work that is necessary. Include the people who helped you, the books that influenced you, your friends, parents, and the experiences that taught you important lessons. This daily task will positively influence your unconscious mind and the effect it can have on your self-image and your coping image.

Expanding consciousness (becoming wiser and more understanding of the Self and its connection to a transcendent reality) is a treasure few individuals seek to understand and pursue. Yet, it is at the very core of coping well, living fully, and with great joy. Notice I capitalized the S in Self in the tradition of Carl Jung, who said that the small self that we know, is our greatest limitation. Yes, limitation.

4. Each day at reflection time, start by writing down the things you are grateful for that happened the day before, whatever they may be. You made an important sale, an old friend telephoned, you had a great cup of coffee at your favorite shop, one of your kids said “I love you,” you had a great round of golf, or your loan application was approved, are examples. Don’t forget all of the so-called little things—your health, home, automobile, neighborhood, abilities you use, and hobbies You will profit significantly from where this mind set eventually takes you.

5. Conclude reflection time with fifteen minutes of meditation. Choose any form that you enjoy. Here is one I used for years. Take several deep abdominal breaths to relax. Sit comfortably, legs uncrossed. Choose a four-syllable word you would like to repeat (I used the Aramaic word maranatha, which means “come Lord”). Focus on your breathing and each time you exhale repeat your word. Any time your mind wanders, and it will, calmly bring it back to your word. The solitude you find in meditation engenders peace.

6. During your normal day, always keep in mind this crucial fact and use it as a motivator: what you allow to stay in your thoughts affects every cell in your body. When you grieve, every cell in your body feels the stress. Negative thoughts, as well as anger, guilt, and depression, are energy drains. Keep putting this question to yourself, “Do I want peace or conflict to dominate my life?

In short, avoid thoughts that drain your energy. Forgiving others and yourself puts money in your energy bank. Choose loving thoughts to energize you because what you give out keeps finding its way back. Love is your most powerful coping mechanism.

7. Bring balance to your grief work. Allow yourself to be distracted from grief. Accept an invitation to eat out. Go window shopping. Find something to do that gives temporary release from sadness. Everyone needs it. Smile back. And it’s okay to laugh when appropriate. You are not showing disrespect to your loved one in any way. These breaks are absolutely necessary to your mental and physical health. They will promote healthy grieving without illness.

In summary, if you want peace of mind, you must be determined to obtain it, change your daily routine to include down time, and work on your soul through an emphasis on being aware of and utilizing all that you possess. Reflection time is an absolute must.

Peace of mind also means accepting the goal to be restoration oriented and not loss oriented, open to the new and refusing to live only in the past. It will help immensely to surround yourself as much as possible with uplifting friends. Avoid toxic people and places.

In any event, you must change what you do on a daily basis or you reap much unnecessary suffering. The new peace routine you incorporate—a mere twenty minutes of time—becomes a part of your life, for the rest of your life.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. LaGrand is a grief counselor and the author of eight books, the most recent, Love Lives On: Learning from the Extraordinary Encounters of the Bereaved. He is known world-wide for his research on the Extraordinary Experiences of the bereaved (after-death communication phenomena) and is one of the founders of Hospice of the St. Lawrence Valley, Inc. His monthly ezine-free website is