How Do You Deal with Feelings of Loss?

Many years ago, when I was much younger, I had a condominium tenant who vandalized and renovated my property without permission. Aside from being delayed in his rental payments, he tried to "bully" me to sell the property to him.

Out of much frustration, I had decided to sell it to the tenant. But as soon as I did, I felt bad about the loss of my property. It felt as if I was "evicted." Somehow, I experienced a desperate sense of "disinheritance" with the loss.

After some time later, I accidentally passed by a real estate office selling hot-selling condo units near malls and TV stations. That time, I could ill afford to buy with my uncertain income sources. Yet the agent offered me a huge discount and generous payment scheme.

Sooner, I was able to fully pay for my new condominium property, which was way much better in location and cost than the one I had before. Reminiscing of a past "disinheritance," my feelings of loss turned to feelings of victory.

Indeed, it is wisdom to integrate losing with winning when faced by life's wounds or challenges. To begin to see your loss or failure in perspective, the question which can clarify is: Was your loss really a loss or a win in disguise?

I once had a client who lost millions in a business. He eventually went totally bankrupt. He lost everything. Depressed, he progressively became addicted to alcohol. His wife and children were in the brink of leaving him.

Supported by his extended family members (uncle and cousins), he was able to afford to enter therapy. During sessions, he interpreted this whole matter of his losses that led him to believe that he is a "loser."

This "loser" awaited transformation in the therapy hour. The power of perspective, viewing his loss against the "total picture"of his life, melts the negative self image. It reshaped him into a winning person who believes in God and self.

So always remember that the "war is not the battle" in dealing with your feelings of loss. During World War II, Pearl Harbor was a catastrophic loss. Yet, it was the Japanese who ultimately surrendered.

You can lose in life without being a loser. What appeared to be losing can be winning in disguise.