There is one week left to sign up for Cornerstone Counseling’s new Grief Group. In light of this new course, we wanted to focus this month’s blog on why seeking therapy for grief is beneficial and useful.
Unlike other hardships, illnesses and milestones- grief tends to be more repetitive throughout our lives. The reason for this is that grief is not tied to a singular occurrence. It can happen as the result of various circumstances such as the loss of a loved one, financial hardship or other personal trials. Due to the recurrence of this emotion, it is wise to learn how to both address and overcome the sadness that we may feel in these difficult times. With Cornerstone’s skill and expertise on this subject, this new group therapy course will arm you with tools to help you become a master at managing and overcoming your grief.
Now, some of you may be thinking, “Why seek help for grief? It is not a disease.” There are plenty of people who think that grief is not severe enough of an issue to seek professional help or therapy; but we would like to educate you on why this is important. Sure, grief is not a diagnosable condition, such as depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder, but grief can lead to unhealthy habits or disorders if it is not managed properly.
Imagine grief as a form of a gateway drug. By definition, gateway drugs are habits or substances that can open the door to other concerning behaviors. Grief operates the same way. It is important to note that grieving is a completely normal and healthy way of coping with some of the challenges in life, but all too often it can overcome us and become a more serious situation.
For example, the definition of grief is noted as a “deep sorrow” and depression is recognized as a “severe state of sadness and low spirits.” The similarities between these two speak for themselves, but to put it plainly- grief can easily turn to depression just as it can transform to things like severe anxiety and OCD.
So what does coping with grief look like? Unfortunately there is not one clear answer or treatment, but here is an abbreviated version:
- Developing Healthy Coping Mechanisms
- Often times when people grieve they have trouble directing their energy into positive or productive things. More often than not, there will be an increase in stress levels, anxiety and hopelessness, which can lead to a variety of difficult hurdles. Instead of channeling emotion into these harmful feelings, it is best to try and find other outlets for our energy such as being social or taking part in hobbies. The positive emotions related with those activities will be helpful in the healing process.
- Adjusting Your Perspective
- When people grieve it is common for them to become stuck in that grief. It is as if the walls close in on the current situation and they are overcome with the hurt they are feeling. It is important that you remember that there is a life beyond your grief that has wonderful things to offer. Instead of being trapped in a tunnel of despair, allow yourself to see the light and goodness that the rest of your environment has to offer you. Your grief is not the end of your story, it is simply a dot on the timeline which you can surpass.
- Take Care of Natural Needs
- As simple as it may seem, in the thick of grief you often forget to take care of simple needs such as eating healthy and getting enough sleep. These factors make a significant difference in your body and mind’s ability to manage your emotional hardships. If you are not properly fueled it can become even more difficult to overcome the negative emotion you are facing.
- Support Groups
- The above is just a snapshot of ways in which you can better handle grieving, but all of these are made easier through group therapy. With the help of an educated leader and the support and experiences of others- you will be more empowered to take some of these difficult steps. Group therapy allows you to open up the wounds that you are dealing with to seek true healing. Working together is healthy and can make the entire process a lot less intimidating.
The first Grief Group will take place on February 18th. If you are interested in joining or scheduling personal counseling, please give us a call at 513-889-5880.