Have you ever lost a loved one? In today’s episode, Destiny Malibu and DJ Dezzee give some helpful tips on how to cope with loss and grief. Having recently lost their grandfather, they share what has helped them through this hard time.
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How To Cope With Losing A Loved One
We are so excited to be back. We missed you guys.
Thanks for coming again.
We are going to be talking about some more mental health topics. If you are new to the show, we are a mental health-focused show. We want to build a community of people who are working on themselves and talking about things that are going on in their lives and feel like they can bounce those ideas off with other people and like-minded people, and continually grow every single day. That’s what we’re about around here. Some of the topics we’re going to be talking about now are going to be a little heavy. One of the first ones that we are going to be discussing is how to deal with the loss of a loved one.
We are going to be in another episode pretty soon here talking about how to deal with the holiday seasons. Holiday seasons can be very tough for people during this time of year, especially if you’re dealing with the loss of a loved one. Dezzee and I are going to start by talking about how to manage and cope with that loss. I’m not sure if you guys know this, if you follow us, @DestinyMalibu and @DJDezzee on social media, but we lost our grandfather.
He was 85 years young.
We love him so much, and we miss him. It’s been a tough week just trying to navigate through those emotions. We have experienced loss, and that is never something that is easy to deal with. Our Grandpa Doug, in particular, who we lost, lived with us our whole lives. That in particular has been difficult because he’s someone that we’ve been used to seeing every day for as long as I’ve been alive.
That’s been hitting home and it’s been hard, but we want to talk with you guys about how to work through those emotions because losing a loved one and dealing with death is something that is unavoidable for all of us in the human experience. All of us are going to experience losing someone at some point. If this is something that we all are going to experience, how can we work through this?
Also, be there for each other and help each other because you’re not in this alone. We’re in this together.
We want to be here for you and want to share with you some tips on how to cope with such a severe loss. The first tip I want to give you is to talk about your feelings. You are going to probably feel a wide range of emotions. Everybody is different in what they’re feeling. Some people experience immense anger. Some people experience immense sadness, grief, guilt, denial, and shock. There are so many different emotions that you are probably going to experience. Our suggestion is to just make sure you let yourself feel all of them.
You don’t want to bottle it up. You got to let it out.
None of those emotions are wrong.
It’s okay to have your feelings.
It’s okay to ride that wave because it’s going to change each day as you are adjusting to this new reality. We want to remind you not to bottle up those feelings and to talk with somebody. Talk with somebody about how you were feeling and what you were going through. I know that in our family, we all were feeling different emotions.
Yes, we were.
We still are. When we found out in the initial moments, it was a combination of shock, anger, sadness, and grief. You have to remind yourself that it is normal to feel all of those emotions, and sometimes, even all at once. That’s okay.
Feeling your emotions also can cause you to neglect yourself. We don’t want you doing that. It’s important to remember to eat food, drink water, and get plenty of rest along the way because those are some of our survival things. We need to rest, eat food to survive and drink water.
I know a lot of people that I’ve talked with, myself included, sometimes, when I’m dealing with a stressful time, there can be different responses. Sometimes we undereat, overeat, turning to alcohol, or something to try to numb us. It’s important during a time of grief to the best of your ability to try and just sit with your feelings and try to prioritize that self-care and not forget that taking care of yourself during a period of grief is one of the most important times to take care of yourself because your body is already under so much emotional and psychological stress that it’s so important to remember and not neglect to take care of yourself physically.
Make sure that if it’s not you personally and it’s a friend or loved one, check in on them and say, “Did you eat today? Is there something I can bring you?” Try to be there for each other because it can be pretty challenging sometimes when you’re dealing with that much grief to even think about yourself. Another tip we want to share with you guys is being patient with yourself because sometimes it can take many years or months until you feel like you’re somewhat at a place of normalcy in your emotions as you’re going through and grieving something that big of a deal. Be patient with yourself because it might feel like, “Am I going to feel this way and this huge hole in my heart forever?”
I can say that because I have lost friends and family members before, you never stop missing somebody, but the pain does ease a little bit over time. It’s a reminder to yourself that you’re not going to feel this way forever. You’re not going to feel this huge sadness forever. That’s important to remember, especially when it can feel so overwhelming and you’re like, “I can’t sustain this level of emotional volatility for very long.” It’s a reminder that it will get better, and to let yourself feel those emotions and understanding that the missing doesn’t go away, but the pain will ease with time. Give yourself time.
Don’t forget that just because you’re missing someone and maybe you’re afraid that you’re going to miss somebody, you don’t have to forget them. There are plenty of ways to remember your loved one, through photos, stories, creating a celebration of life photo book, or something along those lines that will help you to always remember the person that you lost.
A lot of times, we can find comfort when we’re missing somebody if we were lucky enough to be able to have a piece of their clothing, like a jacket, hat, or bracelet. Sometimes, even just photos, being able to look at photos and cherish memories since, and if they wore a specific type of scent.
Many of those things can take us back into that moment with that person and help in those moments when we’re very desperately missing somebody. I want to remind you guys to have that coat, memory, or something that you can turn to on hand, so in those moments, you know a remedy that you can turn to that you know immediately is going to make you feel a little bit better.
I know that whenever I’m going to be playing rummy and cards, I will always think of grandpa because he was the first one to teach me how to play rummy.
Some amazing memory I have of my grandpa is my grandpa always calling me his Marilyn Monroe. He loved watching my music and my music videos. We’re both crying now. We got to pull it together. He loved watching our music and loved watching Dezzee and I perform. It’s just important to remember that you can talk about those memories. It’s nice to know that you still have those memories. You still have those belongings you can turn to and still feel close to that person. It’s so important to talk about those memories, let yourself reminisce, and feel the memory of their presence because it really helps.
There’s one thing that he loved to say when we would play rummy. He had a saying for every card that he’d pick up. One that sticks out is eight, skate, and donate.
He loves to say that. He had a bunch of sayings for every single time we are playing cards. I wasn’t ever the best at playing cards and still, I’m not, but we have fun memories of our grandpa. He loved to play chess. He’s a big game player.
He’d take us to play tennis, too, when we were little kids.
One of my favorite memories of him is from when I was a little girl, he and I were both obsessed with pistachios. I was obsessed with pistachio ice cream. He loved pistachios. I remember he would get a 25-pound bag of pistachios.
Maybe a pound. A 25-pound is huge.
Maybe it looked like 25 pounds because I was five. I just remember a huge bag of pistachios. We would just sit there in silence, cracking open those pistachios, and eating them for hours. I always think of my grandpa when I eat pistachios. It’s the little things like that to remember and hold onto. It helps to share that with somebody when you’re missing them and to think about something positive about that person. Here are two more tips we have for you. One is a lot of times, we lose somebody unexpectedly or always think we’re going to have more time. A lot of times, we don’t feel like we got to say everything that we wanted to say.
Something that can be helpful with the grieving process is to write a letter to that person that you lost and let yourself say everything that you wanted to say that maybe you didn’t get a chance to. Let all those emotions out. This is something that helps because I know a lot of people, when losing someone, are like, “I didn’t get to tell them I love you for the last time. I didn’t get to tell them about that one time in my life that meant so much to me, a deep dark secret, or whatever it was.” Write it in a letter. This can be cleansing and beneficial for our mental health to get that out on paper and release it from our bodies.
This is something I highly recommend. Last but not least, if you are severely struggling, we recommend always that you talk to a professional and seek professional help because no one is going to have better answers for you than a professional. Talking to a friend, family member, or someone trusted that you love is also extremely beneficial. Talking to a professional, if you have that opportunity, there are online hotlines for free, and you can find resources like that.
I’d love to say BetterHelp because better help is a very affordable online version of therapy. If you have an in-person therapist, that’s amazing, too. We want to remind you that even though you might be feeling so much now, you are going to be okay. Healing doesn’t mean forgetting. Cherish those memories and be patient with yourself. Give yourself time and surround yourself with people that you love.
If you want to share any happy memories of the people in your life that you may have lost, please feel free to send it to AskDestinyMalibu.com, and we’d be happy to read those.
On our YouTube channel at Destiny Malibu, you can leave comments about your loved ones there on this specific episode. That would be beautiful to read. We love you so much. We are so excited to be talking about mental health at the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas and sharing with you something important to talk about.
You never know when it’s going to happen. Sometimes, you expect it, but it’s important to talk about it.
We are so grateful for you and for this community of people focused on bettering themselves every day. We love you so much, and we will see you in the next episode.
After diving into the Seven Pillars of Mental Health for the last several weeks, today, Destiny explores a different topic. A VERY important topic!
She talks about a quality that’s a crucial part of human connection. A quality that’s desperately needed, but sadly lacking, in our society. A quality that helps you understand people on a deeper level. A quality that gives you amazing mental, emotional and physical health benefits!
So what is it? And how do you develop it and live it out? Tune in to today’s episode of The Destiny Malibu Podcast!
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A HUGE Part Of Human Connection!
We are so excited to be partnering with the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, and talking about a topic that we feel a lot of times needs a little more love and is not talked about a lot, especially in Las Vegas, which is a party city.
We’re all about having fun, going out, and doing all those things.
However, we also want to make sure that you guys are feeling good mentally and emotionally. We’re here to be your friends and talk about some mental health topics with you guys and how we can build a community together of people who are focused on becoming the best version of themselves. We’ve been talking about the seven pillars of mental health, which is something that I made that has helped me through my mental health struggles and journey.
Those pillars that we’ve talked about, if you guys haven’t heard them yet, you can go back to previous episodes. We are diving into a new section because we’ve talked about all of our seven pillars of mental health. In this episode, we are sifting into a new topic, which is called empathy and the importance of empathy. That’s what we’re going to be discussing. Empathy is a crucial part of human connection, feeling connected to the people around you and understanding people. It’s the ability to step into someone else’s shoes and imagine what they’re going through. A lot of people are struggling out there and are keeping it private and not telling anybody.
They’re suppressing it and holding it in. They are building it up until one day, the bubble is over. We don’t want any of you to go through that. We’re trying to let you know now how to be empathetic with each other.
How to be empathetic, how to be a good listener, how to check in on your friends and make sure that they’re doing good. Make sure that they’re feeling okay because a lot of people were struggling with their mental health during the pandemic. Now, that things are opening back up, we’re so happy. We’re at the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, and we want to be your online friends and remind you guys of the importance of empathy.
We are going to be talking about the three different types of empathy. I thought this was very interesting. There is cognitive empathy, emotional empathy, and also compassionate empathy. Cognitive empathy is the ability to understand what someone is going through. Someone tells you a story. Maybe they were late to work, got a flat tire, or something crazy happened. They tell you about it and you’re like, “I understand how that could be a difficult situation.”
When you understand, you have to sit there and listen, right?
Yes. Listening is a huge part of understanding. Dezzee is an extremely good listener. She listens to me. Babble away nonstop.
I do. She’s like, “Are you listening?” I’m like, “Yes, I am,” and I say back whatever it is that she’s saying.
She’s a fantastic listener. I love people and I love communication. I enjoy asking people how they’re doing and diving deep into those topics. Cognitive empathy is understanding. We also have emotional empathy, and this is when you are able to physically feel what this person is feeling. I’m sure a lot of you guys have experienced this. Sometimes you see someone crying and your eyes start tearing up.
That’s mirroring, but it’s also emotional empathy when you’re able to see someone in pain or somebody struggling and feel that physically in your body. Also, feel the sensation of what that person might be going through. This is emotional empathy. We have the third one, which is compassionate empathy and it’s a combination of cognitive and emotional empathy. Compassionate empathy is the combination of being able to understand and feel what the person is going through.
That normally comes around when you’ve also experienced what that person has gone through. Is that right?
Yes. It’s important to exercise this muscle of compassionate empathy because it’s a huge part of the human connection of being able to understand what someone is going through. Something that I also want to highlight is the difference between empathy and sympathy because I think that’s easy to get confused too. What’s the difference between empathy and sympathy? Sympathy essentially is the ability to feel sorry for someone, to pity someone, but to separate yourself emotionally from what they are going through. You’re feeling sorry for them and pitying them, but you’re not allowing yourself to physically feel any of those sad emotions.
You’re keeping it at an arm’s distance.
You’re like, “I’m so sorry for you. That sounds sad,” but you’re not emotionally connecting. Empathy is the ability to see somebody and emotionally connect. You sit there with them and say, “I understand what you’re feeling. I feel your pain.” Maybe you’ve been through something similar. This is the difference between empathy and sympathy, which is important to highlight how beautiful it is to be able to empathize with someone. It’s because when you’re sympathizing with someone, you’re removed from it. You’re like, “I hope that gets better. I feel sorry for you,” but you’re not having that emotional connection with the person.
You’re probably not listening. You’re like, “I don’t understand what you’re talking about and I’m not going to listen.”
It’s important to remember to ask people how they’re doing. Ask them what’s going on in their life and how they’re feeling emotionally, and then be able to sit there and exercise the ability to truly empathize with people. This is a huge part of human connection. It can help you make your relationships so beautiful, build them up, and build those strong connections with people, which at the end of the day, we all want to have those strong connections with people.
As mom told us when we were little is that we have two ears and one mouth. We should be listening twice as much as we talk.
That’s a good highlight and it’s true. We got to make sure we are listening to each other and checking on each other. Also, practicing empathy is not only beneficial for the people around you, but it’s beneficial for you. Studies show that it benefits your health so you are less stressed and you have less negativity in your life. It improves communication skills in your workplace. It improves the connections you have with your fellow coworkers. It transcends personal relationships to a totally different level.
Remember that when you’re going out into the world or when you’re hanging out with people that you are showing empathy for the people you care about and people that you don’t know that well. Sometimes, I’m walking around and I’ve seen people crying in a hallway or something. I always stop and I’m like, “Are you okay?” Sometimes people don’t want to talk. That’s fine. Sometimes people want a hug. They want to talk. It’s not that all of us have the time to do that, but it’s such a beautiful thing to connect with people in that way.
A lot of times, especially with social media and stuff, we all seem to be perfectly happy all the time. It’s because we’re posting everything that’s going good. However, a lot of us are going through hard times. Remember to check in on your loved ones and exercise your empathy muscle. We love you guys so much and we’re so happy to be partnering with the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas, talking about mental health in a big party city and bringing light to this topic.
If you have any questions that you may want to ask Destiny that you want us to talk about in future episodes, you can go to AskDestinyMalibu.com and submit your questions there. Also, there is a free giveaway. Is that right, Destiny?
Yes, Dezzee. We are giving away a free weekend getaway to the Virgin Hotels Las Vegas. They have been so gracious to do this giveaway with us. You guys get to win a free hotel stay weekend getaway. All you have to do to enter this giveaway is subscribe to the show, rate the show and leave a review. You’re going to want to take a screenshot of your review before you hit send. You can email it to Contest@DestinyMalibu.com because it does take 48 hours for the review to go live. All you have to do is submit it. Review the show and send it to that email address and you could win a free weekend getaway and dinner with us.
We’d love to have dinner with you so make sure you do that. I think we’re going to end the show with our mantra.
If you don’t know the mantra yet, it is, “If you hate me, I love you. If you love me, I love you even more. You are not alone, and we are in this together.” We love you guys so much. Make sure you come back for the next episode.
It’s strange but true—what you eat affects not just how you feel physically, but also how you feel emotionally and mentally. Indeed, food is a very important pillar of good mental health.
There’s a strong connection between your brain and your gut. According to a Harvard study, 90% of your serotonin receptors are located in your digestive tract. So doesn’t it make sense that the food you eat will affect your mood and your mental health?
When Destiny was younger, she had some pretty intense mental health struggles. She didn’t know it then, but she was also afflicted with lots of food sensitivities.
It turns out that the foods causing her physical problems were also hurting her mental health.
But now? She feels MUCH better! What did she do to experience such a remarkable turnaround? And what does she recommend you do?
She talks about it on today’s episode of the Destiny Malibu Podcast. Check it out here!
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Better Food. Better Mood!
What’s going on, everybody? Welcome back to the show. It’s just going to be me because Dezzee is traveling in Florida, so everybody say, “I love you Dezzee and I miss you,” in the comment section. I know I’m missing her now but in this episode, we are going to be talking about another one of the seven pillars of mental health. We’ve talked about self-love, social life, purpose and exercise and now we are going to be talking about a very important pillar, which is food. Before we dive into this topic, I want to read you, folks, a quote from Harvard Health.
It says, “When we consider the connection between the brain and the gut, it’s important to know that 90% of serotonin receptors are located in the gut. In a relatively new field of nutritional psychiatry, we help patients understand how gut health and diet can positively or negatively affect their mood. When someone has been prescribed an antidepressant such as an SSRI, the most common side effects are gut related. Many people temporarily experience nausea or gastrointestinal problems. There’s anatomical and physiologic two-way communication between the gut and the brain via the vagus nerve. The gut-brain access offers us a greater understanding of the connection between diet and disease, including depression and anxiety.”
I have always been extremely fascinated by gut-brain access. Right there in the quote, you heard that 90% of our serotonin is produced in our gut. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “You are what you eat,” and that is such a true statement because when it comes to our mood, our mental health and in general, how we’re feeling, our energy levels and everything, what we’re eating affects how we’re going to feel physically but also emotionally.
That’s what we’ve been discovering more with new studies. They said the new field of nutritional psychiatry is starting to make some amazing discoveries. What happens is, in our guts, we have good and we have bad bacteria. There’s an ecosystem and a balance where the good bacteria should be overpopulating the bad.
What happens a lot of times is maybe we’re not sleeping as much, not being as careful with the health of our food choices and if that bad bacteria start to overpopulate the good and the ratio starts to get imbalanced. This is when we can start to see problems with our health. Not only physically but because it’s going to affect our mood because of the gut-brain access. The gut-brain axis is fascinating. I know I’ve experienced this before, if you’re nervous, maybe you get butterflies in your stomach or your stomach feels weird.
Conversely, if our emotions can affect our stomach and causes us to feel butterflies and nervousness and all of these types of things in the stomach, then also the opposite is true. If our gut is not balanced and the bad bacteria is overpopulating the good, that can also send signals to our brain and cause sad emotions. The gut-brain axis is fascinating to me. It’s important for us to make choices with our food that are going to help us thrive and be the best versions of ourselves physically and mentally.
I think the importance of food and what we’re eating a lot of times can get overlooked in the mental health sphere. Personally, when I was younger and I was struggling with my mental health, I didn’t know it at the time but I was struggling with a lot of food sensitivities and inflammation in the gut. Inflammation in general is one of the root causes of disease.
I didn’t realize that all of this inflammation going on with my gut because I was sensitive to the foods I was eating was also affecting my mental health. I know that everyone has a different version of eating and what feels good to them. It’s important to emphasize that I don’t believe there’s one size fits all for a way of eating.
Everybody’s different. It’s important to speak with your doctors, with your physicians and figure out what way of eating is healthiest for you and for your body and your body type. I tried a lot of different styles of eating to figure out what made me feel my best physically and emotionally, my mental clarity, my energy, my skin and all of those things.
I wanted to see what way of eating made me feel my best. After trying a lot of different styles of eating vegan and vegetarian, pescatarian and paleo and all of these different types of ways of eating, I found Dr. Gundry and Dr. Paul Saladino. Both of them have so much information and are incredibly intelligent men. I’ve learned a lot from them.
I’d say that the way I eat now is a combination of Dr. Gundry and Dr. Paul Saladino’s suggestions. For the most part, I focus on a whole foods-based diet. That’s what works for me and what that looks like for me is a lot of fruits, vegetables like spaghetti squash, zucchini, butternut squash, mushrooms, spinach, mixed greens, lots of fruits and lots of healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil and pasture-raised butter.
I do well with eating meat. I know not everybody eats meat and that’s totally personal. Tortillas out of cassava flour with water and olive, mix it together with cassava flour and cook them on the grill and put butter on them. That’s basically what I eat every single day and I feel good like that. My mental clarity is good. My skin improves so much. My energy improves so much.
I discovered that a few years ago I was living in a very high state of inflammation. As we talked about from Harvard Health, 90% of serotonin is made in your gut. If your whole body is inflamed, if your stomach is inflamed and that serotonin isn’t being produced properly, it can affect not only your physical health but your mental health too.
I found what works for me and I’m happy with it. I feel better than I’ve ever felt in my whole life, honestly, following this low inflammation way of eating. Though we all have different ideas of what the right menu looks like for us as individuals, we all can agree that and trying to grab more natural foods, more things like fruit and more things that come from the earth instinctively make more sense.
Let’s all try to get those fruits in, try to get those veggies in and make choices with our food with the mentality of how can I nourish my body? How can I give my body the best fuel, the most premium grade fuel to function at its highest level so I can live a long life, healthy life and energetic life? That’s what we want to do. I want to encourage you guys to make those healthy food choices and not forget that the food we eat has a direct impact on our mental health. I love you folks so much and I hope that you are able to incorporate this pillar into your life and pick foods that nourish your bodies.