The Holiday Season can be rough if you or someone you know is suffering the recent loss of a loved one or something that is important to them. Getting through the holidays will take some loving care and compassion for yourself or give understanding towards others you may know.
Although the stages of grief following a loss are fairly universal, it can express itself in different ways. There is no right or wrong way to grieve any kind of loss. Each person is unique and will deal with it in any array of emotions.
When I was suffering from the loss of someone who was a big part of my life, I would be talking to a friend and suddenly burst into tears. At other times, I felt depressed, with little energy. Allow yourself the room and grace to grieve however you need to. It is a process.
I would like to share some ways that might help you during this season where everything seems to be the opposite of what you are going through inside.
These are adapted from the Harvard Mental Health Letter.
Express Your needs. If you are not up to attending a Christmas Party put on by Aunt Sara every year, just let her know you are going to stay home this year. Join in when you can. Others should understand.
Start a new tradition. You can place a lit candle on the dinner table, leave an empty chair, or have someone say a few words of remembrance. Purchase a special ornament in the persons honor to place on the tree.
Change the celebration. If you normally do a huge Christmas Eve Party, maybe pass the baton on to another family member or you can go to a restaurant, to ease the transition time of home celebrations.
Volunteer or help someone else. Make a donation to a favorite cause or charity in memory of the person who you lost or serve meals at a local shelter.
Give yourself the gift of time. The grieving process does not necessarily conclude at a six month or one year mark. There can be comfort in different places at different times. People who love you can be your support and strength during the difficult moments. Grief does usually soften and change and with some time the holidays will become easier to handle.
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Contact your Pastor, Counselor or join a support group during this time if you need to. They can help you navigate and get through this tender season.
Some things in life are unplanned, especially when it comes to being sick and then hospitalized.
When someone you love is admitted to the hospital, even for a planned surgery, there are certain things that you can do to make it better
for them. Even if you are not faced with this right now,
it is good to be informed, so you can have the best possible
outcome for your loved one.
Recently, this happened in my family.
A trip to the emergency room with my nineteen year old son, turned into a three week long
There are things that you can do
for your loved one that will help them while they are in the hospital
in the recovery process.
Having a backround as a Registered Nurse,
I know how hospitals function, so from a professional, as well as, from a caregivers side,
this information will be invaluable to you.
There is a lot going on behind the scenes
that you may not be aware of,
and being somewhat flexible can help keep you and your loved one stay sane.
Although you may not have the same controls as you do at home, you can still have a say
in the care your loved one receives. So….my number one tip,
ASK QUESTIONS! The olden days are gone where Doctors were treated like Gods.
No disrespect needed, but you are paying THEM for a service, and it is your absolute right to
ASK AWAY! You may or may not get the answers right then that you need,
but most Doctors are willing to give answers. Even as a trained medical professional,
I never pretend to know it all and need answers as a caregiver.
Knowing the What and Why can be beneficial since you will probably be near your loved one the most during
a hospital stay, and on many occasions, help in the recovery process. So,
DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS!!
At one point, I knew I would not be around when the Doctor made the daily rounds,
so I left a list of questions.
You can also call them. Nurses are also a great resource, and can usually answer any questions you might have.
Be present and visible. Yes, around the clock!
Hospital staff are frequently overloaded,
and your presence really makes a difference. You act as an advocate to your loved one,
who may be unable to have a say. Be prepared to hear beeping machines!
Hospitals are actually very stimulating and noisy places to be, so
promoting a restful environment can happen more by posting a sign on the door and holding phone calls at intervals.
Take turns with other family members and friends. At the first possible chance,
bring comforting items from home. I brought several pillows with our own pillowcases
and some super cozy blankets. Being in the hospital can be scary and lonely,
and things that are familiar
bring a lot of peace. My son used them the entire stay!
A trip to the gift shop at the hospital produced a soft Teddy Bear the size of a pillow,
and you bet he donned a baseball cap from my sons favorite football team.
He hung out in the hospital room the entire stay!
Okay, I hear ya, my son is nineteen years old, but never underestimate a soft snugly stuffed animal!
Age is not relevant when you are not at the top of your game.
Definitely visit the gift shop for that one of a kind gift. A card, balloon, books, or magazines, and even flowers and plants are available
when a trip to a store is not feasible.
Recoop offers a gorgeous 100% Organic Cotton Recovery Robe that can be ordered online. Perfect in speeding up the recovery process! These will be perfect for anyone you know experiencing illness, as it promotes recovery and well-being. Pictured below.
As a side note, if you are far away from someone you love that is in the hospital,
most gift shops will let you purchase items over the phone and deliver to the room.
Although the hospital supplies the basics such as toothbrush, lotion, etc..
your own personal items,
well…there’s nothing like it. Do not forget deodorant!
You might want to add some socks, slippers(non slippery), shorts, loose t-shirts, and robe.
I am sure you have seen the beautiful gowns they give
you in the hospital!? Not!!
Once the get well cards start rolling in,
tape them to the wall over the hospital bed and in a place visible to
your loved one.
This will ensure that the hospital staff will see
that their patient is an actual person, and someone highly cherished.
It will also remind your loved one that they are, as well!
Most hospital stays are very short, but
even a few days can be monotonous and boring.
Be a motivator to get your loved one in recovery mode as soon as possible!
Once they are able to sit in a chair, and go for a walk,
facilitate it! Like I said, hospital staff are busy,
so anything you can do is great! The sooner a person gets moving, the better for their
Something else you can do to help beat the boredom
and give hope for the future,
is start a Vision Board. Get some magazines of interest and bring scissors, poster board, and glue.
This is a common practice for dreamers and
entrepreneurs, and anyone that wants to be
Great way to promote recovery! Another tip,
bring in a blank Journal and Daily Devotion or Quote Book.
If they are unable to read or write, you can read something inspirational to them.
One last thing, you have seen the adult coloring books out there, right?
A friend of mine bought me one, and it was filled with
inspirational quotes. I left it in the room so everyone who came for a visit
could color one and then pin it up
with the cards!
Something else to keep in
mind is taking care of yourself, the caregiver. The road to recovery is different
for each person, and you will need support and care, as well.
You and your loved one will get through this in time. Hang in there,
and reach out to others for support. Stay in touch with us at Recoop. Join our Facebook
and Instagram community for inspiration and information
you need to live a healthy and happy life.
Family and friends will be happy to help you, as did my family and support network,
when going through this time. Recoop offers a free downloadable Self Care Guide that can help.
Have you ever experienced times in your life when you are spiraling in a downward direction? Maybe you are going through something difficult right now or have experienced a loss of some kind? Maybe you know someone who is struggling with some mild depression and you need some information to pass on to them.
It could be that something triggered a source of pain and it has left you dumbstruck and feeling alone in the world?
Well, you are not alone.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association in America, 6.7% of the U.S. population 18 and over, with the average age being 32.5 years old and women, suffer with a Major Depressive disorder.
In this article, we will be dealing with mild cases of depression and sadness. I will also be giving information related to more severe forms of depression that I have gathered through research.
I have experienced this same feeling of sadness and overwhelm and have been fortunate enough to find my way out and you can too.
First of all, it is normal to experience the emotion of sadness and we would be robots if we did not, agree?
There will be times of deep sorrow in our lives that is not a quick fix, especially in the event you lose someone or something of great significance to you.
You will most definitely go through the stages of grief and that will take time or counseling with a professional.
Most feelings of sadness may linger for awhile, but there are action steps that you can take right now that will get that spiral going in the opposite direction and help you to start afresh.
Let’s take a look at some ways that I have had great results in moving forward from a time or season in the funk zone.
I might add here that during these off seasons or days of darkness, I left behind some baggage that was not helping me anymore and grew in other ways that actually improved my life in the long run.
So….. being uncomfortable is not always a bad thing. It is sometimes during those gloomy and dark days that we learn to truly appreciate and love living even more!
NEW BEGINNING ARE OFTEN DISGUISED AS PAINFUL ENDINGS. ~ LAO TZU
If you give some of these tips a try next time you are feeling blue, you will find yourself humming a happy tune once again! Are you ready to leave your doldrums behind and get going with living again? A new door is about to open for you..I just know it!
REMEMBER NOT THE FORMER THINGS, NOR CONSIDER THE THINGS OF OLD.
~ Isaiah 43:18 ESV
One of the best things you can do, is to try something NEW. Some of my favorite verses in the Bible are all about Fresh Starts and New Beginnings.
The beginning of this verse comes from Psalm 96, and says, “Sing to the Lord a new song…”
As a matter of fact, we cannot stay in one perpetual season without needing a change of some kind!
If we were only created to make changes or start something new once a year like society teaches, we would be in a perpetual downward spiral.
One example that is obvious are the four seasons, right?
So, like this verse says… do something or anything new! This will ignite a spark in you! You will go from a crackle to a blaze in no time. Here are a few ideas to get you started on something new even if you cannot even muster a nod right now.
Along with bringing something new on board in your life,here are a few ways to get out of the blahs that have been caused by self neglect.
This means you have given everything in your cup away and have not refilled the love.
This is a pretty easy fix
I don’t know about you, but the first thing I do is spend time getting my love cup filled by God and journal my prayers, and/or, my desperation. Last time I found myself bummed out, I went to a beach near my house that was empty and literally cried out to God! I am pretty sure He heard me, my goodness! There are several Self Care Ideas on Recoops website for free download to make life easier for you.
Just click here.> Self Care Plan. Something else that works absolute wonders for rejuvenating the soul and mind is a warm bath using cleansing Himalayan Salts. It purifies, relaxes and calms your mind and body. Create a spa environment by burning a candle and playing some soft music.
Our affiliate, Sowell, located at the bottom of our Home Page offers some Himalayan Salts that are fantastic! Give them a try.
As much as alone time is great for coming out of a funk, too much alone time could mean you are isolating.
Isolation can be and usually is your worst enemy. Reach out to a gal pal or someone you trust. They will be glad you did! I love my bff’s! They have gotten me out of some pickles, for sure!
START BY DOING WHAT IS NECESSARY, THEN DO WHAT’S POSSIBLE; AND SUDDENLY YOU ARE DOING THE IMPOSSIBLE. ~ ST. FRANCIS ASSISI
Super good advice!
One last thing I would like to recommend that has helped me immensely in moving forward when I am stuck in Blahsville, is to set some realistic goals that are super duper easy.
Remember..we are depressed at this point and do not want to go further down to despair, because we have not been able to meet the lofty goals we set. Those are good for another time! It could be as simple as,” I will walk the dog around the block and grab a coffee at Happy Cafe tomorrow morning.” Even something like vacuuming or folding a load of laundry can bring a sense of accomplishment and give you a boost.
Remember…..Make small attainable goals for yourself! We can call these Mini Goals. One little bit of movement gets the ball rolling….It’s called inertia or momentum.
The reality that at some point you will experience episodes of sadness or depression that leads to that downward spiral is more or less inevitable. The action steps we discussed were for mild depression or sadness.
Clinical Depression is no laughing matter and if you or someone you know has any of the symptoms listed below for five or more days over a two week period, most of the day, nearly every day, then I encourage you to seek out a counselor trained in treating depression. Seek out help! You are not alone and people care!
The Anxiety and Depression Association in America can be contacted for more information.
According to Daniel K. Hall-Flavin, M.D., Clinical Depression as defined by The American Psychiatric Association, are listed as
If you have any doubt.. contact your Primary M.D. or local Suicide Helpline.
You can, and deserve to be happy again!Continue reading
Do you have dreams in your heart? Have your dreams stayed alive, or do they seem distant and unattainable?
Have you had dreams for your life or business that did not work out,
or maybe you are a little stuck and don’t know where to start….
Do you want some easy steps to take
on how you can discover and walk into your God given dreams?
or dream again?
You will want to read on then, especially if you know there is more for
you than you ever imagined…no pun intended!
I have always been a dreamer myself and have at times wondered if they were just my imagination or wishful thinking!
Let’s begin by defining what type of dreams I am talking about.
Your God given dreams could be a thought or impression,
something that you have seen in your future that you want to do ,
which could be a literal night time dream or in your mind,
a longing in your heart to accomplish something, have a child, or even get married.
I remember dreams as a child wanting to be a performer. I always loved to sing…, maybe someday I would be famous!
Another childhood dream I had was to be a trapeze artist.
Wow, that seems ridiculous considering I am afraid of heights as an adult!
I am sure you can think of dreams you have had that seem like a distant memory,
or maybe something new has entered your heart and this dream seems impossible.
Well, I have got some great news for you!
Those dreams were put there by God, plain and simple.
Think about all the brilliant inventors from the past, as well as, all the miracles,
and tremendous feats from those mere humans, from days gone by.
Many of these dreamers have made our lives so much easier now.
What if they decided that their dreams were too big or just vain imaginations to pursue?
Well, I think we all know the answer to that one!
Your God given dreams could be a thought or impression, something that you have seen in your future that you want to do…”
~ Ann Cooper
The dream is just the beginning of one wild and exciting journey, and those that go for what seems unattainable in human strength, are choosing the road less traveled, but one that ultimately will be the most fulfilling.
Now do not lose heart if you have found yourself nowhere near those God given dreams…
Maybe you are closer than you think!
Sometimes our dreams must die so that our human stuff goes with it.
Believe me when I say that the dream that gets resurrected
will be more supernatural in nature when it comes to fruition.
The dream often goes through a little dormant stage where it gets nourished and perfected.
We, the dreamer, go through some character building of learning to wait and trust in God, until He reveals the finished product! You see, your life is a beautiful reflection of His nature and the dreams you dream are all part of this unveiling to the world!
Are you looking for a formula and easy ride to attain your dreams?
The best formulas that I have searched for and found have been are in the bible.
Don’t be afraid to read this God breathed book! Reading it is an admission of strength, not weakness!
It is filled with wisdom for your success.
One particular verse that has really encouraged me in my understanding of God dreams is this one,
“Take delight in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Here is a key to tapping into God dreams; to “take delight in the Lord.”Psalm 37,verse 4, NIV Version,
What starts to happen as you practice this, is that your desires start getting aligned with His desires, which is always
the absolute best!
Going back a ways to my earlier childhood dreams….
These were the beginnings of seeing my potential, my God given potential. I may not have become a trapeze artist, but there are some elements of a trapeze artist in me!
I love to see things from a higher perspective and I have been known to take a few risks!
I still love to sing, and I have sung in front of an audience,
but most of my performances have been for an audience of One.
Sometimes our dreams are redirected and take on a new form.
That is okay!
Maybe the season for that dream is over and God is ready to give you a new one.
So, how do I go for my dreams, you ask, or how do I discover my God given dreams?
Maybe you do not even have any dreams for your future.
I am happy to share a few ways to get this process started.
Things that I have done and still do.
Four years ago, I had a dream to start a business, that I never gave up on and thought about constantly.
When it was time to take action, I took steps.
Little ones at first, and once the momentum started, my faith, with God’s direction and leading, the business eventually took form. Here is something else that I do on a regular basis.
If you do not already do this, I recommend having some conversations with God.
Go somewhere quiet so you can hear in your heart what He says to you. Ask Him directly. What are Your dreams for me? Would You Make Your desires for me, my desires?
Write down what you see and begin to pray about it.
Believe me, if it is a God dream, you will not be able to forget it. Then, take one action step towards it and see what begins to open up for you.
Now you may need to get some support for your endeavor, and that is okay too.
The Lord directed me to some wonderful women that helped me attain my God dreams.
Maybe you need to take a course on whatever it is you want to accomplish.
Maybe you just need to meditate on scriptures related to your dream and believe.
Something else that is really important is to surround yourself with others that will stay positive with you on your journey.
Naysayers are not part of the plan, and will undermine what God is speaking to you regarding your dreams.
Business and Life Coaches, can often help you
get the ball rolling on seeing your dreams become a reality. It worked for me once I knew I was meant to start
my business, Recoop.
I have also been mentored my whole life by women and men who have written beautiful books and am so grateful they followed their dream to write their Life Story and lessons learned in book form!
Recoop’s team is also here to encourage you and cheer you on! Stay connected with us!
We want to see your beautiful God given dreams come to life!
I know I have just scratched the service on this topic of going for and discovering your dreams,
but I hope this article has sparked something in you!.
Dreams really do come true!
If you haven’t listened to Somewhere Over The Rainbow in a while, I strongly encourage you to do so.
It speaks about really getting to a higher perspective where possibilities are endless and possible.
It also speaks about optimism, which is key to seeing your God given dreams become a reality.
Rainbows speak of God’s promises.
You will truly be inspired!
You can also sign up below to receive our weekly blogs and articles, which will help you with those positive vibes!
Recoop will be offering Consultations in the near future to help you bring clarity to your possible dreams of writing a book based on your life story, or maybe you need some life topics for future speaking engagements or blog posts. Some of our clients have gone on to write books
or have used the topics we have gleaned from their Life Story that they have shared with us in a confidential setting.
I cannot wait to see what dreams will be born in your life! Happy dreaming!Continue reading
When you think of recovery, you probably think of hospitals and ten step programs, right?
Although those are both places where recovery often happens, there are many forms of recovery that we all experience at different times in our lives. Recovering Joy is so vital in living a full life, wouldn’t you agree?
The word recover actually means to recoup or regain something that has been lost.
This could be health, relationships, emotional well-being, joy, purpose, love, finances, and the list could go on.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could recover some of the things we have lost in our lives? Of coarse there are things outside of our control, and those have to be placed into the Divine’s hands,
but we can play an integral role in this process.
Let’s discuss the recovery of joy for now.
I would like to share a few ways I have experienced the recovery of joy in my life, and I hope it inspires you so you may experience a more joy filled and fuller life.
One issue, that I would like to focus on,
that tries to creep into my life as a result of loss, is discouragement. When I have had disappointments, long waits for certain things to come to pass,
or the inability to physically change my situation, it is super easy for me to fall into being discouraged.
I have to say that it has not always been easy picking myself up when events take place beyond my control, but I am learning that I can really improve my situation by practicing certain behaviors and attitudes.
If you apply some of these yourself when you become discouraged from things you have felt loss from, I can assure you, that you will begin to recover your joy back!
One way that I recover from discouragement is to seek out the opposite by getting my hands on
It takes a little bit of effort on our part, but it is possible to be uplifted by just a tiny measure of encouragement. You have heard of the tiny mustard seed that grows into a huge plant, right?
Well, this is the same principle. Some great music, a passage from the bible, an old journal entry, etc..
You see, positive messages are all around, we just need some eyes to see them
and ears to hear them! It takes practice, but you already know what they say about that!
For example, did you know that Palm Trees symbolize victory? If you happen to see one, meditate on that for awhile…..
It is a little hard to stay discouraged once you begin to see and hear all the positive things that are happening around you. I have come to realize that there are certain circumstances that may not change in the time frame that I would like,
but I refuse to focus on the negative.
If you struggle in this area, pick up any book by Joel Osteen or Toni Robbins and catch some of their positive vibes!
Some people are just naturally positive, but for most, it is something that we need to practice.
Another way I have learned to recover from a season of discouragement is to take action towards my own self care.
Hey, this is not being selfish!
Alot of people count on you and me, and we cannot be effective in
our multiple roles when we are down in the dumps, can we?
It could be as simple as getting a pedicure or going to a place that inspires me.
Maybe all I really need is a good nap!
Oh my goodness, this should be a no brainer, but taking care of ourselves is usually the last thing on the list. You can also download a free copy of our Self Care Plan Guide to make it easier for you to plan some “me time.” When I have taken the time to take care of myself, I usually have a huge turn around in my discouraged attitude, so there must be something to that!
Recoop has launched it’s first signature product called The Recovery Robe.
It is made of 100% Organic Cotton. We believe the recovery process happens every time you put yours on. There is nothing like that feeling, is there? Buy one here.
We will also be adding other Eco-friendly Clothing very soon that will make you feel and look great!
Putting something on that makes you feel good and look pretty can totally lift your spirits!
Something easy to do that does not take much effort is to focus on something of beauty in nature or an attribute in someone you admire.
Take a drive down a pretty road, sit on a bench overlooking a meadow or ocean,
watch a child eating an ice cream cone. It is pretty hard not to feel the recovery process taking place.
You may need to reach out to a trusted friend or counselor if you cannot lift yourself up and that is okay.
Recoop is here to help, as well.
You can drop by our website anytime for refreshment and receive our weekly articles by signing up below, or you can stay connected with us on Facebook or Instagram for a daily dose of inspiration. You can bring recovery into your life. It is possible!
Are you one of those people that love a good rainstorm, or are you one of those who love it only after the rain has stopped? Personally, I love the rain if I am safely indoors with a cup of something warm in hand and a good book to read! I also love the smell of rain in the air. I know that what is coming, is going to bring refreshment to the world around me and make everything look and feel new again. I do not mind the inconvenience so much, because I am aware that it will accomplish something beautiful in the long run.
Life can be a lot like the comings and goings of a light or heavy rain. There are times when the rain is gentle, unassuming, and smooth. This is when everything in our life is in balance and order and things seem to be going our way, when all of the sudden, it starts to thunder, and lightening flashes across the sky. Then the downpour comes and everything becomes dark, overwhelming, and scary. These are the times when things may not be going our way and we have left our umbrella at home! I know this has happened to me..many times.
Whether we like it or not, we will experience both of these scenarios as we journey through life, and believe it or not, they are both good! There are times when we need those gentle rains, when things do not seem as unattainable, the road is paved and life does not require as much effort from us. But, there can also be great gains going through a storm or trial in our life that we cannot see at the time.
We can take some lesson from the eagles, who fly to greater heights during a storm and actually benefit from it. Of coarse, at the time it may be dangerous and difficult to fly through, but giving up is not an option. It is sometimes through the difficulties of life that we face, where we learn about ourselves the most.
Are you going through a storm in your life right now or a gentle rain? One thing you can hold onto in any circumstance is a knowing that after the heavy rain you will have a completely renewed and different perspective on things. You will definitely experience peace and a feeling of newness again. Knowing that this temporary struggle will end can bring us hope and help us to keep going. If you are going through difficult circumstances, reach out to someone and get support. Connect with us via Facebook and Instagram for tips and information on leading a happier life and getting through the storms. You are not alone!Continue reading
Self-care is the most important thing you need to focus on. If you are not looking after yourself, you will not have the energy needed to look after others. We have put together an easy to follow action plan to help you on your way to mastering your self-care routine. Click the button above to download your copy.
Welcome to my Blog and Company, Recoop! Have you ever thought how amazing it would be to recover something that you think you lost? It could be fleeting youth, the dog days of summer, and lack thereof, easy living, vacations at the beach, a stress free life…Well, you get the idea. This is what my blogs will endeavor to recover! We will go on this journey together and dare to dream and take hold of many blissful and relaxed times ahead. I will be offering many free tips on how to recover and enjoy life.
Can we dream together a bit? Let’s just recoup one thing at a time, shall we? I’ll tell you one thing; my dreaming involves comfortable clothing, breathing in refreshing ocean air, and sand between my toes!! So, that’s where this recovery process is going to begin. Have you guessed where we might be heading yet? Of course! We are heading to the beach and the salty air by the ocean. Where else can you get that skip back in your step? Who’s coming with me? I thought so. Let’s go!
Since I live fairly close to Santa Barbara, California, that’s where I am heading. My favorite beach in Santa Barbara, called Butterfly Beach, is located in front of the famed Biltmore Hotel. The scenery is breath taking and a great place to take a long walk and replenish my soul. Where’s your favorite beach? Whether it’s five or one thousand miles away by travel doesn’t matter. Here’s a free tip; Recovery can begin just by thinking about this beautiful place with your eyes closed and taking several deep breaths. A tried and true method of relaxation, taking three deep breaths in a row while dreaming of a serene place has been known to drop the stress level down. Try it.
Feeling better yet? Recovery and renewal is a process…but one step in the right direction can make a huge difference in your life. Here’s another freebie. Write down the name of your favorite beach and start planning a trip to go there! When you write something down, it makes it more attainable and will give you hope! I am so ready to relax and enjoy a rejuvenating walk at Butterfly Beach! After I get some fresh air, I am heading to Casa Blanca Restaurant on State Street for a delicious Chile Relleno. Just saying that name helps me relax. What steps are you going to take today to start your recovery journey? Recoop’s up and coming Organic Clothing line has released our first Signature Piece: Our 100% All Organic Cotton Recovery Robe to begin the relaxed vibe we’re going for…..Join me for this discovery process. Sign up below for my free weekly email updates.Continue reading