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Learning Grief Counseling Techniques


The Grieving Process

Grief can be sudden, scary, and extremely real. When you lose someone or something important to you in life, it’s difficult to let go. You may have heard that grief is a process, and it is, but it’s not a straight line. Grief isn’t linear. You may think you’ve healed from loss, and then suddenly a wave of sadness hits you hard. That’s why grief counseling techniques can help you understand how to cope with loss, and give you practical skills to move forward even if you’re feeling sad. 

Talk about the person who died

In grief counseling one of the most important things is to talk about the person you’re grieving. Yes, you might want to move on. But to let go, you need to talk about the person you’re grieving. There may be happy memories or traumatic ones, but they’re all valid. There’s no wrong way to grieve. You might feel angry that your loved one died. This is a real emotion, and you have the right to be mad. It’s difficult to know what to do with that anger. Maybe there are words left unsaid, and there’s no way to gain closure because the person is gone. You can still process these complicated feelings by talking about the person’s memory in counseling.

Let go of guilt

During the grieving process, you may experience guilt. Perhaps you don’t feel like you’re “sad enough.” Maybe you don’t believe you’re dedicating enough time to grieving the person who you lost. Maybe you feel bad that you didn’t get to say goodbye in the way you wanted to, and now your loved one is gone. Guilt is a powerful emotion, and you can work through these guilty feelings with a grief counselor. You might feel guilty and not understand why. That’s OK; you can talk about these confusing guilty feelings, and work through them in counseling. Part of coping with loss is accepting that you’re going to feel like you’re “not doing enough” and that’s natural. But that guilt doesn’t have to paralyze you or stagnate you in the grieving process. You can let yourself feel it and keep going.

Self-care

In the process of grieving, you might find yourself taking care of others before yourself. It’s natural that you want to care for your family, and they’re grieving like you. But, remember that you come first. If you don’t take care of yourself, you’re going to burn out. That’s why talking about self-care in grief counseling is important. One of the grief counseling techniques to work on is taking care of yourself. You’re investing so much energy in honoring the memory of the person you lost, and you might forget about showering or eating. You need to do these necessary actions, so you take care of you. Yes, it’s important to honor your loved one’s memory, but you need to keep living, and they would want you to care for yourself. Remember that part of grieving is knowing that your loved one wants you to be happy and keep going.

Grief and depression

You might find that in addition to grief, you’re experiencing depression. It can be hard to differentiate between the two, but they’re different. While grief has a cause associated with it, depression can occur at any moment. When a person is grieving, it’s because they lost a loved one. When someone is depressed, it could be because something happened to make them feel this way, or they could have a medical condition of depression. A feeling of hopelessness characterizes depression. When you’re depressed, you can’t envision things getting better. With grieving, you understand that a loved one died, and the process of grieving will take time, but you will feel better eventually. While grief can improve over time, depression generally doesn’t get better without treatment. And what’s tricky is that you could be depressed and grieving the loss of a loved one at the same time. It’s important to discuss your symptoms with a grief counselor or therapist to understand how to cope.

Getting help in online counseling

When you’re grieving, you can benefit from online counseling. Online therapy is an excellent place to talk through your feelings of grief and start to heal. You can remember your loved one the way they were. You have the right to heal on your timeline. An online grief counselor can support you through the grieving process, the guilt, the memories, and the sadness. They’re ready to help you heal. 

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