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After studying to become a therapist and crisis intervention counselor—even doing her master’s thesis on the stages of bereavement—Christina Rasmussen thought she understood grief. But it wasn’t until losing her husband to cancer in her early 30s that she truly grasped the depths of sorrow and pain that accompany loss. Using the knowledge she gained while wading through her own grief and reading hundreds of neuroscience books, Rasmussen began to look at experiences in a new way. She realized that grief plunges you into a gap between worlds—the world before loss and the world after loss. She also realized how easy it is to become lost in this gap. In Second Firsts, Rasmussen walks you through her Life Reentry process to help you break grief’s spiral of pain, so you can stop simply surviving and begin to live again. She shows you that loss can actually be a powerful catalyst to creating a life that is in alignment with your true passions and values. The resilience, strength, and determination that have gotten you through this difficult time are the same characteristics that will help you craft your wonderful new life. Her method, which she has used successfully with thousands of clients, is based on the science of neuroplasticity and focuses on consciously releasing pain in ways that both honor suffering and rewire the brain to change your perception of the world and yourself. Using practical exercises and stories drawn from her own life and those of her clients, Rasmussen guides you through five stages of healing that help you open up to new possibilities. From acknowledging your fear, to recognizing where you stand now, to taking active steps toward a new life, Rasmussen helps you move past the pain and shows that it’s never too late to step out of the gap and experience life again—as if for the first time.
|Publisher:||Hay House Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.30(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.50(d)|
About the Author
Christina Rasmussen is a coach, crisis-intervention specialist, and speaker on a crusade to change the way we live after loss. As the founder of Second Firsts, an organization to help people create a pathway back to life after loss, Christina has helped thousands of people rebuild, reclaim, and relaunch their lives using the power of the human mind.Websites: secondfirsts.com and www.thelifestarters.org
Table of Contents
A Message to the Reader xi
Chapter 1 My Second Firsts 1
Chapter 2 The Science of Getting Past Grief 19
Chapter 3 Life Reentry Stage 1: Get Real 41
Chapter 4 Life Reentry Stage 2: Plug In 65
Chapter 5 Life Reentry Stage 3: Shift 97
Chapter 6 Life Reentry Stage 4: Discover 123
Chapter 7 Life Reentry Stage 5: Reenter Life 145
Conclusion: Welcome Back! 169
Resources for Life Starters 175
Recommended Reading for Life Starters 177
About the Author 187
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Every so often the right book gets into your hands at exactly the right time. This was the case for with Christa Rasmussen’s Second Firsts: Live, Laugh and Love Again. I had recently set a personal goal that I wanted to change my relationship with loss and grief. Throughout my life, whether the it has been the death of a loved one or the loss of a key relationship, I have struggled with moving forward. In these times, I am an isolator, privately trying to attend to these wounds when the reality has been, I really don’t know how to do this. Speaking from experience, Christina Rasmussen shows the way. After sharing her own heartbreak, the loss of her 34-year old husband, she introduces her Life Reentry program which provides practical steps to help you reprogram not only how you think about loss and grieving, but also to help you build new habits that encourage you to also focus on living at the same time. After acknowledging the loss you have suffered, a large part of this method focuses on thinking of and using plug-ins for yourself. A plug-in is a small actionable step that you can take to push yourself to move outside of your comfort zone. An example of a plug-in post-divorce, breakup or death, would be to set up an online dating account or accepting an invitation for a date. The focus of a plug-in is on the steps you are taking to rebuild and create a new life; not on the outcome of those steps. After every loss we endure, we are at a crossroads when we have to assign meaning to that loss. If loss and grieving are handled improperly, or not at all, the negative effects can be long-lasting. If you were never taught how to process grief, observed grieving that was accompanied by a lack of living or want to learn how to grieve wisely, this book is for you.
As someone who has been greatly affected by sadness, I was hesitant to open a 'grief book' that might open old wounds. From the first chapter, however, I was home. I read the entire book in one evening and was overjoyed at finally having a guidebook written to lead someone, step by step, out of grief. It was as if Christina Rasmussen knew somehow she was destined for this work. To choose a path of grief counseling, and then to lose her husband so young. It's as if God sent her to us personally to shepherd us into our new life. Christina shows you exactly why your brain holds you in a place of grief, and how it can betray you in your journey out. She personally holds your hand and guides you through your own re-entry into life. She is a shining example of a life filled with beautiful, happy Second Firsts.
This book is amazing. I have never experienced loss in the way most people think of loss, but Christina does an amazing job with explaining that there are other forms of loss. This book is very inspiring. As I was reading it, I felt as if the author was really there with me and it made me think a lot about my own life, and I felt "safe" and no anxiety when thinking about it. It was very well written and Christina does an amazing job with explaining the material in a way that makes it easy to understand, and I have benifited greatly from reading this book. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who has experienced loss of any kind even in the form of abandonment or rejection. One of the best books on a subject like this I have ever read.
The best book I've read in years. It makes you want to be happy again. It helps you believe in life again & that anything is possible.
Simply amazing book! I couldn't put it down. Christina's words, her story, the exercises... Truly Transformational. Nice work Christina. This book will help the masses.
I was touched by the raw and heartbreaking story of this wife and mother facing the loss of her husband. But what followed was an inspiring story of triumph over her grief. Focusing the largest portion of her book on her "Life Reentry" process. Many books on grief repeat the usual phases, but this one busts past those steps and into real world solutions. She also offers continuous support through her "Message in a Bottle" newsletter, Facebook, Twitter, and her many speaking engagements.
After my husband died, I entered a temporary "holding pattern" where I was getting things done but stuck between my old life, and the new life that is yet to be. Christina uses analogies for behaviors and thought patterns following a loss that help identify ways of escaping the waiting room, while respecting the deep grief and sadness that occurs when your spouse dies.