Grief is a complex, deeply personal experience that we often encounter after losing someone or something we cherish deeply. It’s not a one-size-fits-all emotion; it manifests uniquely in each of us. When grief enters our lives, it can feel like being pulled under water by a rough wave, surrounded by emotions that are both overwhelming and unpredictable.
The impact of grief on our lives can be profound. It doesn’t just affect our emotions but often permeates every aspect of our being.
- Cognitively – grief typically clouds our thoughts, impacting focus, memory and decision making.
- Physically – grief often leads to changes in appetite, sleep patterns, and energy levels.
- Socially – grief can make us feel alone and trigger a desire to isolate.
- Emotionally – grief mimics depression and leaves us feeling lost, hopeless, empty, sad and fatigued as if we’re navigating a world that others can’t fully understand.
Yet, within this journey we get thrown into, there lies a transformative power. As we navigate the twists and turns of grief, with time we can discover reservoirs of resilience within ourselves that we never knew existed. Over time, grief has the potential to shape us in profound ways, fostering newfound strengths, wisdom, empathy, and a deeper appreciation for life itself.
Thankfully, there are evidence-based approaches that offer solace and guidance through the grieving process. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) helps individuals understand and reframe negative thought patterns, allowing for healthier processing of emotions. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) techniques can aid in managing the overwhelming feelings that often accompany grief. Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) encourages acceptance of difficult emotions while promoting actions aligned with personal values.
I also utilize Existential Therapy to support clients through grief. Existential therapy focuses on exploring the fundamental questions of existence, helping people access their inherent capacity for healing and supporting them to find meaning in their experiences, including the profound loss that is rooted in grief.
If a client desires, I also enjoy working spiritually with them. Spiritual work, irrespective of any religious affiliation, delves into the realm of faith, a higher power, interconnectedness, and transcendence. It provides a framework for exploring the larger questions about life and death and helps solidify and integrate principles that perhaps were once only theoretical and somewhat intangible.
My work as a therapist is much more than applying techniques; it’s about creating a safe space for clients to explore their emotions without pressure or judgment. I work hard to create a supportive environment where people can untangle the knots of grief, finding their own unique path toward healing and renewal.
My method is grounded in compassion and empathy, driven by evidence-based theoretical approaches and supported by holistic and integrative interventions. My work is further supported in what worked for me while I was going through my own difficult grief journey about a decade ago. I believe in meeting individuals where they are in their grief and acknowledging the uniqueness of their experience. Through a collaborative therapeutic relationship, we work together to navigate the waves of loss, fostering resilience, growth, and renewal.
I’ve witnessed the incredible resilience of the human spirit in my practice. While grief may feel like an insurmountable mountain, with time and support individuals often discover newfound strengths and parts of themselves they didn’t know existed plus a deeper appreciation for life and its complexity.
The way through grief is not linear and it can’t be controlled; it’s a series of ebbs and flows and can be turbulent. But with therapy, self-reflection, a good support system and self-care, it’s possible to find moments of peace along the way until grief gradually starts opening to a new and nourishing landscape in life. If you’re in the throes of grief, know that you’re not alone, and there is hope for healing.