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WHY I do what I do

There are so many ways to pitch your business… But what would happen if I started telling people WHY I’m really in the business I’m in, from the heart? 

That question struck me as I was thinking of sending yet another “sales pitch” mail to all the networks I’m in. Do I want to sound like the current “Newsletter trend” or do I want it to come from the heart? When is it actually OK to speak from the heart without following all the sales pitch rules and formats? Are people going to find me weird if I do?

There is only one way to find out I guess, and that’s putting it to the test!

So WHY I’m in this business of Grief Recovery?

When we lost our firstborn daughter it dawned on me how little help there was for us as parents. We had received excellent medical care for our child, but when she had left us and all the medical equipment had been collected we were standing there with an empty crib, diapers, baby clothes, toys and all the rest of it that comes along with a baby. We now had to arrange all the practical details like organising the funeral, tombstone, documents for flying back to Sweden with an urn, insurance, medical bills having to be clarified etc etc etc.

Having to deal with all of that while in a state of chock and grief was mind boggling. There was no real list of support options presented to us, and I had to muster the energy to look for help myself.

I immediately signed myself up as support parent at the Children’s hospital and the palliative home care team here in Zürich to at least give other parents with the same diagnosis a chance to contact a fellow parent. But what about all the other people being stuck in loss and grief? How could I be there for fellow expats experiencing loss, living far away form their natural support system of family, friends, language and familiarity?

That’s when I decided to do the certification to become a Grief Recovery Specialist. I now work with my passion to help others getting unstuck, feel less alone in their grief and have someone listening to their story. I wake up every day feeling so blessed to be able to do this kind of work, and that our daughter taught me so much about life, death and all the things in between. Like my coach Edson Williams said yesterday, “Karin flipped the script from a bereaved parent to using the loss as an inspiration to help others.” That really warmed my heart.

So that’s WHY I’m doing what I’m doing! I just can’t stand the fact that so many are stuck and limited by their unresolved grief, and if I can just help a handfull of these people it’s worth it! And I just have to trust that the people needing my help will find me, in one way or another. Have a great weekend and start of February!

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Almost Christmas

We are a few days from Christmas and this year there will be people missing around the Christmas table, maybe they have been gone for a long time or maybe they left during the year. Regardless if it is “the first Christmas without…” or if it is “yet another Christmas without…”, please know that time will not heal all wounds so don’t be surprised if the pain from a loss flares up again during the holidays.

IMG_2039For you who know of people that are missing loved ones, please acknowledge this by talking about the missing person, mention their name, let the family know that you care and dare to talk about the more difficult aspect of celebrating this holiday. People in grief have not forgotten about the departed one and will only appreciate that you are there to listen and to talk.

Have a lovely Christmas and a wonderful new year 2013! Much love, Karin

“Please place the oxygen mask over your own mouth and nose before assisting others…”

“Should the cabin lose pressure, oxygen masks will drop from the overhead area. Please place the mask over your own mouth and nose before assisting others.”

We have all heard it, on every flight we have ever boarded, and they are many as we live abroad. And I see a very clear comparison with how we can assist our kids through loss and grief.

We simply do what we have been taught ourselves, Don’t be sad, Replace the Loss, Grieve alone, Be strong (for others), Time heals all Wounds and Keep yourself busy, or something similar might be behaviours that you have been taught as a kid. And as we all know, kids do what we DO, not what we SAY!

So the first thing to do as a parent or guardian, is to look at our own way of dealing with loss and grief. Painful as might be to look at our own stuff, we need to look at what we have been taught and see exactly what “knowledge” we are teaching our kids. As long as we are unaware of what we have been taught, we are passing the same (sometimes false) information on to our own kids. Simple as that!

So if you feel like making the commitment to deal with your own grief and make sure that you have your “oxygen mask” on before you help your child, feel free to contact me or read more under “the Grief Recovery Method®”. Love, Karin

“When children Grieve”

What an important theme that is, how we as adults can assist our children through loss and grief.  It could be anything form dealing with death (of a grand parent, parent, relative, sibling, animal…), divorce, pet loss, moving, illness, changing school, losing confidence, self worth or power to get out of a bad situation…

So how can we teach our children those useful skills to deal with their feelings surrounding the topic loss and grief?

That’s exactly why I’m committed to create a workshop for you all that want to be able to give your children the right tools and skills to deal with loss from an early age.

Stay tuned for January 2013 and sign up for my newsletter to be notified when and where the workshop is taking place.

Love, Karin

Grief Recovery in German!

Why wait? If I can help people deal with their Grief in a more loving and helpful way than I have ever come across myself, why be shy about not speaking PERFECT German? It’s more about listening and be a heart with no mouth so I have no excuses for bailing out on my mission, which is to help as many as I possibly can to get relief from old or more recent grief.

So today, ladies and gentlemen, I’m taking the BIG PLUNGE by starting up with a new client in German! I’m now OPEN FOR BUSINESS I THREE LANGUAGES!

What myths about grief did you learn as a child?

There is a lot of homework to go through if you decide to sign up for the Grief Recovery Method®! However, it is there in order to lift forward the old myths and intellectual comments you have learned to use when you are grieving yourself or when you meet others in grief.

Wouldn’t it be a relief to shake these old beliefs out once and for all?

Just drop me an email at karin.andersson.hagelin@gmail.com if you want to know more about the Grief Recovery Method®! Take care of yourself <3

Now certified at the Swedish Grief Recovery Institute

The last week of September I travelled up to Stockholm from Zurich, leaving my kids for the longest time EVER in their lives! The reason was to attend a certification course in the Grief Recovery Program™ at the Swedish Grief Recovery Institute in Stockholm.

So what is grief really and how do you know if you are stuck in unresolved grief?

There are more than 40 events that can create the range of human emotions called grief. Death of a Loved One [or Less Than Loved One], Divorce, Estrangements, Financial Changes and Health Issues head the list. Whether the loss was recent or long ago, it may still be limiting your ability to participate fully in life. The Grief Recovery Personal Workshop assists in the ultimate journey back to your heart and to the mainstream of your life.

To feel sad when you’ve experienced a loss  is normal and natural. However, most of us lack theknowledge how to actually go through a natural grieving process. Instead  we are surrounded bydifferent myths and fears about grief and sadness in our society. Lack of knowledge and insulationare the two main reasons that grief remains unresolved.

IMG_2954The Grief Recovery OUTREACH Program®

The Grief Recovery Outreach Program® is a proven action plan for people who want to process the pain that their losses have caused. The program is designed to provide you with knowledge on how to redeem your grief so that you are able to participate fully in life.

During the program you will complete your own grief processes. It is my role as an instructor to provide you with instructions, tools and support, but you will have to complete the work yourself. The program is not a therapy, but instead a way to provide you with  knowledge and offer support so that you can go through and complete your own grieving processes.

The course material we use is developed by John W. James and Russell Friedman who, during the last 30 years, personally have helped more than 25,000 mourners. For more information about the method you can read more at the Griefrecoverymethod.com or sorg.se (in Swedish).

I’m now certified to offer you  individual sessions where we meet 8 times x 1 hour or group sessions where we meet 12 times x 2 hours. I offer the sessions in Swedish, English or German.

For more information about the program, bookings and rates, please contact me at karin@hagelingriefrecovery.com.

Lots of love, Karin

My next step, a certification course at the Grief Recovery Institute in Stockholm

So I’ve had a couple of moths asking myself over and over again “How may I serve?”, and as soon as I gave in and said to myself that I can’t be doing less than offer help and support to other human beings suffering from unresolved grief things started to shift in a BIG way! People, books, videos and ideas literally started dropping at my feet as if the Universe tried to get me to understand that I had found my path.

So later this month (September 2012) I will go to Stockholm and attend a certification course on how to assist others through grieving processes. I’m so excited and happy to have taken this step, even if it’s scaring the crap out of me at the same time. This means that I have to work though my own unresolved grief before I can help others which is a daunting thought, so wish me luck!!

Much love, Karin

We survived – how we dealt with a terminal diagnosis

This post is mostly for you that might be in the same situation that we were in 5 years ago. I just want to say, although you honestly don’t think you are going to survive – I mean, how can you when your child dies – you do survive! Somehow you do.

We decided on creating this “fairy tale” about Ingrid being a very old soul that only needed a huge boost of unconditional love to rise to the next level, and that we had to respect Ingrid’s life journey. She had chosen us as her parents because she counted on the support and unconditional love she needed to survive as long as she could. The diagnosis was what it was and we couldn’t change that, so we might as well do the very very best we could, and I’m SURE that every parent would. For us it was pointless to start asking “Why us?”, “Why her?” etc. You are never ever going to get a satisfying answer.

The hardest part was that we felt so alone, abroad without our relatives and close friends close by for support (however, a lot of new, beautiful people stepped up and helped us!!). That we just got sent home after getting the diagnosis, without a follow up plan or support system in place made me feel so lost and helpless.

We found ourselves standing outside on the pavement outside the hospital in a dark, wintery Zürich, not knowing if what just had happened was was real or not. It all felt so surreal. I just wish that there had been someone there to offer us a big hug or hold our hand for comfort, but there was no such person. So after Ingrid had passed away, I swore that no one should have to feel that lost and lonely so I volunteered as support family both with Kinderspital Zürich and Kinderspitex (home care unit for palliative care at home) in case anyone else would get the same diagnosis and asking for support. I received a phone call from Kinderspitex last week again, and although it brings back very raw memories, there is no way I’m going to step away from that responsibility.

So here is my offer: if you have just gotten the same, shitty diagnosis SMA type 1, and you are “Googling” (as we did) after what on earth just smashed your life in to tiny tiny pieces, PLEASE contact me! I’m here, I can listen, I can take it!

Lots of love, Karin