Episode 105: Sarah Nannan- Grief Unveiled

Sarah Nannan - Grief Unveiled


Sarah Nannen is an author, grief and life coach. Based on her own experiences and those of her clients, she writes candidly about the intense shadow-land of widowhood and grief's many layers. She is the founder of an online grief coaching program dedicated to shifting the negative paradigm surrounding grief toward one of hope and possibility.  


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Show Notes: 
Sarah Nannan - Grief Unveiled
Sarah Nannan (4:04)

Sarah is a life coach for widowed women and the best selling author of “Grief Unveiled: A Widow’s Guide to Navigating Your Journey and Life After Loss”. 
Sarah helps women who are suffering internally and shifts the grief process to something they move through. She teaches women how to grieve with intention rather than being in victim mentality.

Process to Grieving? (5:32) 

Sarah says grief  doesn’t work in steps as current models show. “It’s as though we are taught to move away from grief rather than through it.”  When people are grieving, they either go to organized religion or medical institution-both have pretty rigid structures around what’s possible in healing. Sarah feels that both of these structures don’t believe in the human capacity to heal.

Sarah’s Personal Story (9:44)

Sarah was living in Japan on a Marine Corp air station with four children. Her oldest child was 5 and her youngest child was 6 weeks old and was born when her dad was away in training. It was a Sunday morning when Sarah heard a knock at the door and saw several Marine’s standing at there in their dressed blues. 

She’s says the look on their faces told her everything she needed to know. It set forth a stream of emotions and a week later she was relocated state-side. Her husband was in the States when the crash happened. 

She had to pack up 4 babies and go tend to business. Over the next year, in an effort to not seem like “the pathetic widow” and be strong, she blocked her own grief and went into survival mode until her body started to get sick.

Seeking Support (13:09)

Sarah began having heart palpitations and fatigue beyond what a single mother of four would have. She went to her doctor’s for help and was told she must have anxiety due to the stress of her life. She didn’t feel seen in any of her support areas and began seeking alternatives to healing. 

She shifted to a more holistic approach. Sarah says, “we don’t need to be saved in our grief, we need to be seen.” No one can see you until you see yourself first. 

She turned inward during her 200 hour Yoga training and began learning to find stillness and softening which allowed to let her emotions be felt.

How to Support Someone in Grief (21:11)

Understand empathy-curiosity to understand what it’s like for someone

Tell them you love them and you are there for them 

Show up long after the funeral/Call them rather than telling them to call if they need something

Sarah’s Soul Calling (28:15)

Sarah didn’t want to be the one who had to talk to grieving widows but kept getting being asked to speak to women who went through similar experiences with their military husbands. 

She received a call from a friend in Japan regarding a woman who lost her husband in a crash. Sarah was in the area and went to see this woman. 

She had a 2 hour conversation with the new widow and comforted her. She let her be at the center of her own storm.

“Self-care isn’t about a bath and a couple of candles. It’s about learning to notice your pain and holding it tenderly so that you may move through it.” -Sarah Nannan 
Self Care (31:00)

We live in a world where self-care is thought of as a luxury. We don’t value it on the medicinal level that we require. It is about noticing what you need. It includes setting boundaries, saying no, and taking space for sleep. 

For Sarah it was hiring a babysitter so she could be alone long enough to know what she was thinking and feeling. 

We live in a place where we are disconnected from our needs which can lead to us becoming shells of humans. “If you treated your self-care like you treat your cup of coffee in the morning, imagine how much better you would feel.”

What Men Need to Know (45:20)

Men need powerful vulnerability just as much as women do. Men are unwilling to claim this for themselves but also woman are unwilling to allow and celebrate that in them.

"Notice what you notice" - Sarah Nannan
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