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  • Hey, it’s Marie Forleo and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to create a business

  • and life you love.

  • So this is an episode that I’ve wanted to do for so long.

  • It’s something that I’ve personally struggled with and I have a feeling some of you may

  • struggle with it too.

  • So here’s what were talking about: what exactly should you say and not say when someone

  • you know is suffering from a loss or an illness or, God forbid, something devastating happens.

  • In other words, how can you truly comfort and support someone in a way that is genuine

  • and that’s not trite or, worse, unknowingly offensive.

  • Here’s the thing, these days were all communicating so often via text and email

  • and social media anytime there’s news.

  • So it can get easy to rely on the sad emoji from Facebook or the hug symbol, right?

  • Now, I wanted to do this episode because I feel like all of us, we all have so much more

  • love and compassion in our hearts than often were able to express simply because we

  • don't know what to say, or worse, were totally afraid of saying the wrong thing so

  • we say nothing, which isn’t good.

  • So while the following list isn’t comprehensive, I really believe it’s going to get us started

  • and my hope is that youre going to join in and help crowdsource even more wisdom in

  • the comments below.

  • So let’s get started with what to say and what not to say if someone shares a scary

  • and potentially life-threatening diagnosis.

  • So I asked one of my best friends in the whole world, Kris Carr, to help me out since she

  • was diagnosed with cancer well over 10 years ago.

  • And here’s what Kris recommends.

  • First, don't say, “I know exactly how you feelbecause, here’s the truth.

  • Unless youve been through the same experience, you probably don't know exactly how someone

  • feels.

  • And most people know that youre trying to empathize, but others may feel like youre

  • minimizing their experience.

  • Number two, don't push your opinions, especially if someone is overwhelmed.

  • So when youre constantly bombarded with advice, it’s hard to tap into your own intuition.

  • And depending on the circumstance, it may be just more appropriate to say less and hold

  • back and listen more.

  • Number three, don't share that you knew someone with the same problem or issue and it didn't

  • turn out well.

  • That’s a big no-no, because it will not bring you guys closer.

  • Number four, do reach out and offer a loving shoulder to lean on and, even better, try

  • and plan something fun to do together.

  • You know, when youre going through the fire, a little sunshine really helps.

  • And number five, do keep checking in.

  • While it’s wonderful to tell your friend or your loved one to reach out if they need

  • anything, they probably won’t.

  • So just keep checking in and proactively offer specific support.

  • So, for example, “I made a huge pot of veggie chili and I’ll be in your neighborhood at

  • 5pm.

  • Can I drop some off for you?”

  • Next up, let’s talk about a few do’s and donts for when tragedy strikes, like a

  • fire or a natural disaster or something that completely wipes out somebody’s home or

  • their environment or their business.

  • So these incredibly insightful tips are from Dr. Andi O’Conor.

  • This woman’s house burned down not once, but twice and she’s written about it extensively

  • on her blog called BurningDownTheHouseBlog.com.

  • Here’s what Andi says.

  • Number one, don’t start with the wordsat least,” as inat least youre alive

  • orat least you have insurance.”

  • Meaning don't try and force gratitude on the person.

  • Number two, she says don’t sayit’s just stufforit’s just moneyor

  • it’s justanything.

  • That dismisses the enormity of what the person is going through.

  • Number three, don’t make it a discussion of God or faith or religion, even if you think

  • youre sure of the person’s religious or spiritual belief.

  • So, for instance, if they go to your church or youve heard them mention God, don't

  • say something like, “God only gives you what you can handle.”

  • Remember, an event like this can really rock someone’s faith and their world, so don't

  • assume that theyre open to ideas like it was all meant to be, especially at this time.

  • And number four, the only do from Andi, is make sure you say these eight words: “I

  • am so so sorry. How can I help?”

  • Finally, let’s cover some do’s and donts when someone loses a loved one.

  • We found some incredible guidance from legendary grief and loss expert David Kessler and from

  • Joanna Goddard of Cup of Jo.

  • Here’s some of what David shares.

  • Don't say things like: he’s in a better place, there’s a reason for everything,

  • it was her time to go, she was such a good person, God wanted her to be with him.

  • And don't say be strong.

  • Now, on the other hand, do say things like this: I’m so sorry for your loss, I wish

  • I had the right words, just know I care, and I’m always just a phone call away.

  • Cup of Jo has a post specifically about writing sympathy notes, which she posted after she

  • lost her brother-in-law Paul to lung cancer.

  • She offers these extremely helpful do’s.

  • So first up, do send a snail mail card.

  • Not that online is wrong, but especially now in the digital age, an actual physical card

  • can be something so special.

  • It’s tactile and you can literally hold those words in your hand and reread them again

  • and again.

  • She also shares do offer to help in specific ways.

  • So saying, “anything I can do for you?” is nice, but actually offering specific ideas

  • likecome over for dinner and well grill for youmakes it a lot easier for people

  • to say yes.

  • And, finally, do tell stories.

  • The more, the better.

  • You can share your favorite memories of the person who died or talk about how they had

  • an impact on your life.

  • The Cup of Jo post says, “the grieving person is thinking about the person 100% of the time,

  • so there’s nothing that youre going to say to make her sadder.

  • Instead, the stories you tell are going to make her feel more connected.”

  • As we wrap up this episode, a few reminders that we all need to hear.

  • So no matter what goes wrong, the most important thing that you can do is be with that person,

  • like really be there for them without judgment and without expectation.

  • Listen to them.

  • And if youre physically together, hold their hand and really be by their side.

  • So let’s close up this episode with a tweetable.

  • Never let your fear of saying the wrong thing, stop you from saying something.

  • Now I would love to hear from you.

  • If you have some other do’s and donts to share from your experience, please put

  • them directly in the comments below.

  • Now, if you do share a don’t, do so with love and compassion.

  • Because, after all, most of us genuinely want to be supportive but we can all make mistakes,

  • especially if we haven’t been through that experience ourselves.

  • Now, as always, the best conversations happen after the episode over at MarieForleo.com,

  • so head on over there and leave a comment now.

  • Once youre there, be sure to subscribe to our email list and become an MF insider.

  • Youll get instant access to a powerful training I created called How to Get Anything You Want.

  • Youll also get some exclusive content, special giveaways, and personal updates that

  • I just don't share anywhere else.

  • Stay on your game and keep going for your dreams because the world needs that special

  • gift that only you have.

  • Thank you so much for watching and I’ll catch you next time on MarieTV.

  • The most important thing that you can do is be with that person, like really be there

  • for them without judgment and without expectation.

  • Listen to them.

  • And if youre physically together, hold their hand and really be by their side.

Hey, it’s Marie Forleo and you are watching MarieTV, the place to be to create a business

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What To Say (and Not Say) When Someone Dies or Suffers a Tragedy

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    Steven posted on 2016/12/01
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