Book Review: The Sudden Loss Survival Guide By Chelsea Hanson

I was honored to read author Chelsea Hanson‘s book The Sudden Loss Survival Guide: Seven Essential Practices for Healing Grief. Chelsea Hanson is an author, grief educator, and spiritual mentor for women. Following the sudden death of both of her parents, Hanson developed her signature system, The Seven Essential Practices to Heal Grief, a program that transforms deep grief into insightful healing. Her mission and calling is leading the bereaved through this unique transformative approach to reconcile their sorrow while continuing to honor the spirit of those they love. Her gentle, supportive programs guide survivors in transforming setbacks into opportunities to live a meaningful life. Chelsea’s published books, grief support programs and online store have been used by more than 700 organizations across the United States and Canada.


The Sudden Loss Survival Guide includes heart-lifting prompts and action steps that guide you towards reengaging in life and discovering deeper meaning. Through Hanson’s grief healing practices, this book delivers the essential answers and tools needed to survive, cope, and heal from the devastating impact of sudden loss. In this book, you will discover seven practices for healing, including creative memorialization and maintaining an ongoing spiritual connection; Skimmable, stand-alone passages with immediate, usable information for the trauma a reader is facing; and a transformative method for living a meaningful, fulfilling life in remembrance of a loved one.


The Sudden Loss Survival Guide is a must read guidebook for everyone who has experienced an unexpected loss of any kind in their life. Filled with guided practices and her trademarked healing process, author Chelsea Hanson reminds readers that they are truly the creators of our own grief recovery experience.  Chelsea introduces her readers to the “Seven Rs” – an innovative and in-depth process for healing grief. Her simple-to-read approach helps anyone experiencing the “grief brain” better navigate the immediate aftermath of unexpected loss. There are a variety of loss-related topics (e.g. understanding sorrow, letting go, fostering a support system, discovering purpose after loss, and many more) as well as healing concepts, actionable exercises and reflections that are perfect for someone who has experienced an unexpected loss of any kind. Chelsea becomes the reader’s personal cheerleader, lifting and supporting them during one of their most difficult times. This book is a wonderful reminder that grief is not insurmountable, and with courage and action you can move through it in one piece. 

Some of the notable quotes from The Sudden Loss Survival Guide include:

– “The death of someone you care about is a powerful catalyst for change. Your life was cracked open, inviting you to become who you were meant to be. You will be uncovering the truth of who you really are and what you really want.” – “You will heal in your own time and readjust to life gradually as a changed person. You will not be the person you were before. How could you be? You will have expanded your capacity to grow, love, and thrive in the face of previously unimaginable pain.” – “Nothing in life prepares you for losing someone you care about. You hurt so much because you loved so much. Before my mother died, I had given little thought to the possibility of death. With this new experience, I had the choice to give in, give up, or give it everything I had. I gave in. I didn’t know what to do, where to go, or who to ask for help. I had waited and hoped that my grief would magically disappear. I was lost and this led to years of struggle, sadness, and lack of fulfillment  which would have been prevented if I had the right guidance and support. You now have the information I wish I’d had when I was mourning the death of those I love.” – “Try this warm-up exercise now: Saying What Matters Most. If you think the task of writing a legacy letter is too intimidating, let’s make it easier. Grab your grief healing journal and set a timer for 3 minutes. Label this section of your journal, “My Legacy Letter.” Take some deep, slow breaths to soothe your head, eyes, shoulders, muscles and joints. Imagine inhaling courage and exhaling fear. Relax your mind. Relax your body. Relax your heart. Intend to go deep into your heart space.” “When you experience the death of someone you care about, you’ll begin to see the world in a new and different light. You’ll experience unexpected and life-altering changes as you integrate loss into life. These adjustments can be devastating, frightening, and confusing. Change can feel unsettling, unnerving, and unpredictable. For many, death is a wake-up call, telling you that it’s time to start living life differently—better.”


–“This Survival Guide is a treasure trove of useful tools, practical suggestions, and helpful practices which, bundled together in an immensely readable format, will serve as a reliable road map to living through and finding meaning in significant loss.” —MARTY TOUSLY, Finding Your Way through Grief “A wonderful resource that provides many useful tools! Chelsea Hanson has created a heart-centered guide to working through the many aspects of grief… Take the time to read each chapter and allow it to speak to your heart and help you heal.—LORI PEDERSON, I Did Not Know What to Say


The Sudden Loss Survival Guide is available for pre-order on Amazon and on Amazon Kindle Unlimited. You can also pre-order directly on Chelsea Hanson’s Website to receive a free bonus.  ————————- Sending you love, comfort and peace!