Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing by Shelley F. Knight
Grief cannot be defined in one simple sentence, as grief itself is not simple. It is a vast and
complex topic with equally vast and complex presentations in terms of signs and symptoms,
longevity, and intensity.
Grief is closely associated with death, but can also be triggered when we lose anything with
which we have an emotional connection. A grief process can come about through loss of health,
wealth, relationships, job, confidence, safety or purpose, to name but a few examples. All losses
– whether it be a way of life or the end of a life – trigger a grief response. Many of us may be
unknowingly living with grief having experienced loss, and all grief is valid and introduces a
need to step on to an unknown path of recovery.
Even with the best intentions, onlookers of our grief may try to pacify our emotions rather than
encouraging us to dive in and discover what is truly going on for us. Some may be awkward,
avoidant, or silent in our presence, whilst others can be more forthright and outspoken. We may
be dismissively told “things happen for a reason” or “you will never get over the loss”. But what
collateral beauty could occur if we courageously chose to listen to ourselves and our unique
grief rather than the dictated beliefs and opinions of others or of society as a whole?
Much that can be read about the grieving process is outdated and can serve an injustice to our
rapidly evolving, modern society. In conjunction with recent medical and societal advancements,
new and complex presentations of grief have arisen. As a result, our own journey through grief
must also evolve in order for us to heal and even flourish as a result of our experiences
I am here to reassure you that you can get through this experience of loss, the madness, the
numbness, and other exacerbations, as it is all part of the healing process that we have labelled
as grief. As part of the inevitable changes from your experience of grief, you will have to
navigate your way through emotions that will swing like a pendulum, with your thoughts
swinging from one extreme to another. You will not know all the answers, never mind how long
and hard you search for them, and sometimes – just to add to your feelings of confusion and
uncertainty – it will seem like you have too many choices and an overwhelming abundance of
My second book, Good Grief: The A to Z Approach of Modern Day Grief Healing does not aim
to replace professional help if that is what you need. It is more to help provide you with a better
understanding of the grief you are facing, and offer you clinical and spiritual insight and tools for
dealing with grief, as well as suggestions on how to create positive changes as you work
through your own unique grief journey.
Grief is one of the most uncomfortable subjects of discussion, and if you are grieving you may
struggle with expressing what is happening to you. I am a great believer that what is not
recognised cannot be changed, so I am passionate that you get to know you and your grief as
part of the starting point of your healing journey.
When the grief journey is one following a death, it is varied in its milestones, depending on a
wide variety of factors: the nature of the death (expected or unexpected), our relationship with
the deceased (sibling, parent, or the relationship being closed or estranged), our personality,
resilience and coping mechanisms, previous life experiences, support networks (family, friends,
social communities and connection to ourselves), cultural, spiritual and religious beliefs.
When a death occurs, it may be hard for you to hear about milestones and how this event is
only the end of a chapter of your life rather than your entire life story. I have witnessed it time
and time again in my nursing days how, when a loved one dies, the family’s life dies and they
become stuck in their grief and their own life journey, not daring to look or believe there is a way
through and forwards.
You may be feeling that your own life is a fragile mirror that has suddenly been dropped and
shattered into a million pieces and is no longer of any great meaning or purpose. However, as
your life continues, and as you start to piece all of those shattered fragments back together, you
will begin to see the whole picture once again. Yes, there will be fine cracks running through
your unknown path ahead, but I like to imagine that it is through these small fissures that we
enable a glimmer of light to shine back in our life.
Grief is a natural response and process that we must endure to reach a new stage in our life. It
can lead us to a place of growth, awakening and profound healing; provided we embrace the
lessons it offers to teach us. Despite the negative portrayal of grief, the grieving process holds a
positive internal experience and purpose that lends itself to a time of recovery and self-
discovery. Our grief can take us from our previously hurried daily existence to a slower reality
which may be for the first time in years. We can start to look at things differently, as everything
we had previously observed, trusted, and understood to be a certainty has now changed. This
shift can lead us to truly question all aspects of our life, whilst noting deficits between what was,
what is, and what it is we wish for in our future.
As I said earlier, what is not acknowledged cannot be changed, and grief reveals new truths and
can lead to the development of greater self-awareness, and even show us a stronger and more
resilient personality than we were ever told or managed to realise for ourselves.
Our grief will mirror what is actually important to us in our life, and whilst our life may look like a
shattered mirror beyond repair, the slowing of energy enables us to discover potential ways to
start piecing our life back together in the best possible way.
Shelley F. Knight is a positive changes expert who can help you through her written and spoken
Shelley passionately shares her years of clinical, spiritual, and holistic experience in her books,
podcast, coaching programme, newsletter, YouTube and social media work.
Shelley F. Knight is author of Positive Changes: A Self-Kick Book (November 2018) and Good
Grief – The A to Z Approach of Modern day Grief Healing (September 2021).
Shelley is host of the award-winning mental health show, Positive Changes: A Self-Kick
Podcast, as well as being the founder and host of Good Grief: Northampton Death Cafe in the
Connecting and working with Shelley is a wonderful opportunity to courageously start creating
your Positive Changes as Shelley comes with an entire toolbox of qualifications and experience
to support you on your journey of growth.
In terms of clinical expertise, Shelley F. Knight holds a first class degree in adult nursing, and
post graduate studies in Palliative Care and Life Limiting Illness, Pathophysiology of Cancer,
Cytotoxic Chemotherapy, and Clinical Hypnotherapy.
In addition, Shelley holds a plethora of holistic and spiritual qualifications, including
Transformational Regression Therapy, Spiritual Coaching, Spiritual Development Teacher,
Holistic Diagnosis Skills, Mindfulness, Neuro Linguistic Programming, Herbalism, Dream
Therapy, and an intuitive Tarot card reader.
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