Excerpt from Preserve These Toes Shifting: A Widower’s 8-Step Information to Dealing with Grief and Thriving Towards All Odds


AJ Coleman was devastated when he misplaced his spouse to most cancers, leaving him alone to boost their child daughter. He felt an virtually debilitating mourning as he confronted this and different challenges—changing into a single father, accepting his listening to impairment, studying to cope with anxiousness and panic assaults, and recovering from job losses. He later discovered religion and spiritually in Israel climbing up the Masada. He wrote the e book Preserve These Toes Shifting: A Widower’s 8-Step Information to Dealing with Grief and Thriving Towards All Odds as a present to different widowers and other people struggling losses and challenges to encourage you together with his heartfelt recommendation gleaned from his journey. He gives actions you possibly can take to maneuver past difficulties and towards happiness.

All of us have obstacles and setbacks, however having the instruments to conquer boundaries could make the distinction between giving up and thriving. AJ’s e book is an eight-step information and memoir will encourage you to replicate in your reactions to hardship and provide the energy to attain your ambitions.


Under is an excerpt from  Preserve These Toes Shifting: A Widower’s 8-Step Information to Dealing with Grief and Thriving Towards All Odds

I wish to assume that life is like driving a curler coaster. You see, everybody rides curler coasters otherwise. Some scream or wave their arms within the air, whereas others sit with out emotion. However no matter the way you experience, ultimately everybody winds up in the identical place. The true distinction is in the way you understand the experience—was it terrifying or exhilarating? The identical idea applies to the way you understand life.

Many individuals have requested me the place I get my power. A lot of it lies deep inside me as I made a dedication to myself to rise larger with every setback, heartache, and problem I’ve endured through the years. I taught myself early on to not settle for defeat, to not settle for failure. These phrases are usually not welcome in my vocabulary. With every problem, I work laborious to beat it, getting ready myself for the subsequent one to floor. I at all times maintain these ft shifting, by no means stopping to relaxation. If I can’t knock down partitions, I discover methods round them. If I can’t discover a approach round, I make my very own approach. I decided a very long time in the past to resolve what I select to simply accept and what I don’t.

As a toddler, I used to be recognized with a listening to impairment. By the age of 20, I suffered from anxiousness and panic assaults. On the age of 33, I turned a widower and single father to a child daughter. And, oh, all through the years, I misplaced my job not a couple of times however 5 separate occasions because of firm layoffs or tradition toxicity. At one level, I had lower than $100 in my checking account and wasn’t certain if I’d make the subsequent lease fee or the place my subsequent meal was coming from.

From an early age, I’d grown fairly accustomed to the truth that life is aware of no boundaries. There isn’t a mercy button to push on the curler coaster when life is brutal and unfair. Life doesn’t acknowledge how a lot it’s possible you’ll be crushed down bodily or emotionally. Life doesn’t really feel ache or have sympathy. It simply retains coming at you full velocity every day. And when dusk settles in, it doesn’t go away; it’s there ready for you the subsequent day.

However someplace alongside the best way, I discovered to “Preserve These Toes Shifting” and supplied a private steering to raised perceive who I’m and what I can do. I’ve discovered that the setbacks, heartaches, and challenges in my life would not have to imply doom and gloom. As a substitute, they’re meant to arrange me for the subsequent steps in my life.

For the reason that Preserve These Toes Shifting: A Widower’s 8-Step Information to Dealing with Grief and Thriving Towards All Odds e book launch in November 2022, I’ve been invited to be featured on a nationwide syndicated tv present, be a part of podcasts and supply written posts to encourage others dealing with grief, whereas offering heartfelt recommendation. 

Disabilities, Impairments, and challenges don’t outline you- you outline them.

In every single place there’s alternative to be impressed and uplifted. It doesn’t at all times come to you. Typically it’s important to go seek for it, and make it occur. Or, within the worst case, create it by yourself. Life is filled with challenges. Once you add incapacity challenges to life’s equation, it turns into a bit extra sophisticated, but it surely doesn’t need to be. 

In the long run, all of it comes all the way down to notion and discovering stability. Why not change life’s equation to make it give you the results you want? Take away the time period “incapacity challenges,” and substitute it with “skill challenges.” Now check out life’s equation. A lot, a lot better! 

Anxiousness and stress are a pure a part of your life. Don’t spend your time and power on issues you possibly can’t management.

Psychological self-care performs a consequential function that entails your psychological, emotional, and social well-being because it correlates with the way you assume, really feel, act, or reply in sure conditions. Every day you encounter numerous stress rigors. The vast majority of the time you possibly can shortly dismiss or maneuver round these rigors as you possibly can see them coming from afar. 

Typically there are rigors missed that can shortly set you off right into a tirade. However earlier than you self-destruct, ask your self the next query: “Do I’ve a five-minute drawback, a five-hour drawback, or a five-year drawback?” Relying on the issue, you might be able to shortly deliver stress all the way down to a extra manageable stage. 

Hardships, struggles, and disappointments are all a part of life. The turning level is the way you rebound and discover alternatives to leverage your psychological self-care so that you just don’t enable these hardships and struggles to weigh you down with worry, anxiousness, and panic.

Rejoice Life, Not Loss

Individuals—and animals too—who contact our lives present us a terrific present by pleasure and recollections, leaving profound impressions that change our lives ceaselessly. They seize our hearts with their smiles and laughter. They turn out to be a part of us as we turn out to be a part of them. 

In the long run, it’s the tales we inform about them that allow them to stay on. As the times, months, and years go by, we proceed to go about our lives. However there is part of them that we’ll at all times carry with us, and nobody can take that away. 

Make no mistake, life is valuable. How we contact the lives of others makes it that rather more particular. All of us have a goal. It’s as much as us to make the most effective of what we’ve been given. Day-after-day is a chance to grab the day. To make a distinction. To stay life. And to have fun life!  

Shedding your job doesn’t outline your profession—it’s an opportunity to hit the profession restart button.

All kinds of layoffs are hurtful, painful, and demoralizing. In some instances, the emotional scars left behind take years to heal. Your emotional wounds is likely to be so deep that the considered reliving these moments brings tears to your eyes. Every occasion left behind its personal distinctive scars. 

Shedding a job and being unemployed can deliver undesirable challenges, however they aren’t everlasting fixtures. It simply offers you an opportunity to likelihood to hit the profession restart button once more to ask your self the next questions: 1) What do you actually wish to do?, 2) What makes you cheerful?, 3) How do you wish to earn a dwelling? 

Take time to assume these questions by, as the chances are limitless! If you end up able to reply them, you’ll have the ability to restart your profession. Getting fired or laid off is likely one of the moments in life when a restart button presents itself. As soon as the emotional curler coaster experience subsides, you’ll have the ability to see the chances forward. Perhaps you’ll resolve to alter careers, take a sabbatical go away to recharge your life, and even retire. Consider it like being reborn.

Every thing in life occurs for a motive. Typically it’s important to belief religion to information you thru troubled occasions.

Have you ever ever observed that life resembles a Rubik’s Dice? Every shade represents totally different considerations of significance, similar to faith, religion, spirituality, well being, relationships, and funds. Irrespective of which approach you flip the dice, colours turn out to be built-in, generally with none actual logic. Simply while you assume you made all the correct turns, you uncover that the colours are additional scrambled, however as you proceed to show the dice, you start to note tips on how to deliver these considerations collectively one after the other. Rubik’s Cubes come in several sizes, shapes, and types, and—very like your life’s challenges—not all of them transfer in the identical course. You’ll have to improvise as you consider the course of every flip. Regardless of the problem, it’s important to maintain turning.

There are moments in life when it’s simply simpler to toss the Rubik’s Dice away. The percentages in opposition to you’re overwhelming. The agony of constant is just too nice, and the will to proceed on could also be misplaced. However earlier than you quit, ask your self one query: “Have I really finished the whole lot I might to beat the challenges I face?”

You have got the facility to beat the obstacles you face. You have got the facility to knock down boundaries that stand in your approach All of it begins along with your notion, but it surely gained’t come straightforward. It’ll take time and endurance. There might be moments of frustration and boundaries that you just encounter. However in case you stick with it and maintain turning, ultimately you’ll see how all the colours come collectively. Destiny doesn’t management that Rubik’s Dice—you do.

My writings and talking are a direct reflection of empathy, compassion, and understanding of what evokes and motivates folks. Life just isn’t about being standard or what number of buddies you’ve. It’s not about how a lot cash you’ve or fancy possessions. It’s about accepting your self for who you’re. It’s about giving again to these in want. It’s about dwelling every second to its fullest extent with out regrets, fears, or ache. Too usually we take a look at our previous as indicators of the long run. However what we thought we knew again then couldn’t be extra totally different from what we all know now.

All of us expertise many setbacks, however with the correct notion, none of them change who we’re for the more severe. As a substitute, they make us stronger, smarter, and extra appreciative of what we’ve. We nonetheless need to make errors and get our tongues tied into knots. Nonetheless, these issues gained’t take away how far we’ve come.

Nobody mentioned it could be straightforward. Then once more, you by no means requested for it to be straightforward. Life classes are blessings in disguise. What you’re taking away from them makes them that rather more particular. I believe religion has rather a lot to do with that.

That is your time; it doesn’t matter the place you began or the place you’re at proper now. What issues most is how you’re taking these subsequent steps ahead and to maintain these ft shifting.

About AJ Coleman:

AJ Coleman is a widower and single father who’s overcome a listening to impairment, job losses, and crippling anxiousness. By way of all of it, he embraced, accepted, and grew. Now he shares his experiences, sensible steering, and assets to assist others conquer life’s challenges.

A monetary crimes professional, AJ earned his BS from the College of Florida (Go Gators!). He lives in Illinois together with his household. AJ is a loyal father who loves touring, studying languages, and watching Florida Gator soccer.

Be taught extra at www.KeepThoseFeetMoving.com.


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