Healing Grief: How Counseling Can Help

Healing Grief: How Counseling Can Help
Photo: Unsplash.com

By: Viraj Shah

Grief counseling can foster greater understanding and meaning by mindfully exploring the distinct stages of grief. In a space dedicated to care and well-being, counseling supports clients on their journey by exploring, learning from, and processing the full range of emotions they experience as they grieve. Grief is a complicated process, yet one that can foster growth. Therapy can help ease the impact of this process. A skillful counselor supports individuals through this journey.

A Safe Space to Explore Emotions

Grief is universal yet intensely personal and unique. Many underestimate the depth of emotion or the time it takes to heal from significant loss. Up to two years is common.

Anxiety, stress, and the feeling of losing control are often part of what brings people to seek help when dealing with grief. While going through trauma or loss, studies demonstrate that grief is linked to challenging mental and physical effects.

An Ally in Overcoming Isolation

Grief, like birth, is a fundamentally solo experience. It’s common to isolate while working through emotions while grieving. Therapy helps boost self-awareness. Self-awareness supports clients as they learn to recognize negative thoughts and behavior patterns and implement healthier habits. A grief counselor can be an ally in a safe, therapeutic relationship where clients can process emotions, explore intuitions and thoughts, and challenge cognitive/behavioral patterns.

Regaining a Sense of Control

Grief, trauma, and the unsettled state affect physical and emotional health, including changes in eating and sleeping habits, exacerbating the already heightened emotional challenges and feeding into a loop of mental and physical symptoms, including a lack of focus and forgetfulness. Plus, dialed-up to the max mood issues, such as sadness or irritability, which can trouble people, as there’s guilt for lack of emotional control added  to the other problems and concerns. A vital part of therapy is that it seeks to alleviate rather than mask symptoms of emotional distress. Clients regain a sense of control and agency as a counselor aids them in acquiring the simple and quite tangible tools that support regulating emotions during the sensitive grieving period.

Skills: From Coping to Hoping

Grief is a healthy response to trauma, loss, or ending. Its message is that change is necessary. Therapy can give you the tools to gain a sense of agency during this unsettled time. Through the therapeutic relationship and tools, including bodywork, breathwork, reframing, journaling, and mindfulness practice, clients can achieve the satisfaction of working towards healing.

Acceptance and Self-Awareness

Acceptance can be one of the complicated stages of grief. Grief therapy allows you to come to terms with one’s loss. Acceptance doesn’t mean forgetting; it’s being supported in the present. Authenticity and “feel your feelings” are essential, yet having the tools to control and direct that energy gives clients a sense of control and agency, which is necessary after the grief process has brought a tsunami to one’s life.

Closure and Uncovering Meaning

Grief counseling aids individuals in moving toward understanding, acceptance, and growth by enhancing their knowledge, experience, compassion, and agency regarding themselves and others through the therapeutic process and the discovery of new cognitive skills and simple, easy, and centering behavioral tools.

Disclaimer: “This content is for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice, nor does it replace professional medical expertise or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.”

 

Published By: Aize Perez

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