Broken Hearts

Exploring myths and truths about grief, loss, and recovery.

Emotional Freedom, a Bonus from the Founding Fathers

Emotional freedom of expression, a bonus of our national independence.

Political and Emotional Independence

Independence Day, the 4th of July, technically celebrates our independence from Great Britain.

One of the major freedoms built into our independence is the right to talk openly about our government, without the fear of retribution if we say something that disagrees with the party in power.

That is an amazing freedom, one that is not available to many people around the world.

In addition to that freedom and the many others gifted to us by the founders of our country, there is also the freedom to be emotionally honest about the thoughts and feelings we have about the events and people in our lives.

It's really hard to separate that emotional freedom from the political freedom that came with independence. It's unlikely that the one could happen without the other, and again, it's not something that is freely available to many of the people on the planet.

So on the 4th of July, we celebrate personal and emotional independence, as well as political freedom. Our gratitude goes to the founders and those who have fought for our freedom to establish and sustain this way of life. Thank you.

The 4th of July - Potentially a Major Connective Holiday

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The 4th of July, along with Thanksgiving and Christmas, is one of the three most connective holidays where families and friends get together.

These holiday gatherings give us each a unique opportunity, apart from the day-to-day interactions in our lives, to openly express our positive thoughts and feelings to each other.

At the Grief Recovery Institute, in helping thousands of people deal with unresolved grief, the most common incomplete communications are the simple things that never got said. Most people have said "I love you," to the important people in their lives. But they haven't always said things like, "I want to thank you for the sacrifices you made for me when I was growing up." Or, "I appreciate your help and support when I was struggling with the end of my marriage."

Emotional freedom of expression is a bonus of our national independence. We write this as a reminder to encourage everyone to use the congregation of family and friends to say the most important, positive things you have to say directly to those people who have been important and valuable in your life.


Pictured is my dog Baxter in his 4th of July regalia leading our neighborhood parade in Studio City, CA




Russell Friedman is Executive Director of The Grief Recovery Institute, and co-author of The Grief Recovery Handbook, When Children Grieve, and Moving On.


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