Part 4 – Healing Process for Grief

Healing after a significant loss requires time, self-compassion, and a personal commitment to acknowledge the emotional intricacies that accompany grief. The timeframe involved to get to a place of healing is yours. Thereโ€™s no right; thereโ€™s no wrong. Your feelings are part of your healing process. What you feel today may differ from tomorrow. What you felt two-days ago can resurface again today.

Posted below are links to the different sections of this series. You can either read from start to finish, or pick those areas where you are, or where you think you are. The grief journey is YOUR journey, but please donโ€™t do it alone. At the end of this series, there is a section with books and online resources.

If you want to reach out to me, contact me HERE.

Time to heal

Allow Yourself Time to Grieve

With grief, the healing process always starts with acknowledging your journey is not linear. There is no predetermined timeline for recovery. Itโ€™s so important that youโ€™ve likely read this statement many times in this series so far.

The healing process begins with the acknowledgment that grief is not a linear journey, and there is no predetermined timeline from initial loss to healing. It is crucial to give oneself the permission and space to grieve at oneโ€™s own pace. Psychologist and emotions expert, George A. Bonanno, discusses the importance of allowing time for mourning in his book, โ€œThe Other Side of Sadness: What the New Science of Bereavement Tells Us About Life After Loss.โ€ Suppressing emotions or imposing unrealistic expectations on the grieving process can impede healing.

Remember that grieving is a personal experience that is unique to you.

Feel your feelings

Accept and Express Your Emotions

Grief involves a range of feelings, from sadness to anger, with moments of relief. It is important to accept the emotions and allowing yourself to experience them. When they arrive, donโ€™t judge yourself about being right or wrong. Emotions are a significant part of our ability to heal. Holding them back impedes your healing.

Laboratory research found significant health improvements by expressing grief emotions through talking, writing, or creative outlets. By allowing emotions and proactively expressing them, you can encourage healing more authentically.

Healthy living

Find Healthy Outlets for Your Grief

Identifying and engaging in creative activities, like art, music, or writing, can empower the processing of grief. Physical outlets, like exercise or mindfulness practices, help release emotional tension and aid restoration of balance. When you engage with constructive and cathartic outlets, you can use the transformative power of healing.

Professional help

Consider Professional Help If Needed

Knowing when to seek professional help is a sign of strength in the healing process. Grief counseling or therapy can provide you with personalized strategies for coping with the complexities of loss. During a randomized controlled trial for complicated grief, research showed professional intervention helped improve psychological well-being. Support from mental health professionals ensures individuals receive the guidance necessary to navigate the complexities of grief and emerge with a renewed sense of purpose and resilience.

A Review of This Section

Coping with grief is a personal experience that demands time, self-compassion, and acknowledgment of oneโ€™s emotional journey. As emphasized by psychologist George A. Bonanno in his book, โ€œThe Other Side of Sadness,โ€ grieving is not a linear experience, and each person must allow themselves the time to heal.

This section on the healing process highlights the significance of accepting and expressing emotions. Suppressing them can impede the healing process. Engaging in healthy behaviors, like creative activities or physical exercise, plays a crucial role in authentic healing.

The recommendation to seek professional help, highlighted by research on complicated grief, reinforces the strength in recognizing the need for additional support. In your journey of grief, finding personalized strategies and guidance from mental health professionals can lead to a renewed sense of purpose and resilience.

References for this Section:

Bonanno, G. A. (2009). The Other Side of Sadness: What the New Science of Bereavement Tells Us About Life After Loss. Basic Books.

Pennebaker, J. W., & Chung, C. K. (2011). Expressive Writing and Its Links to Mental and Physical Health. In H. S. Friedman (Ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Health Psychology (pp. 417โ€“437). Oxford University Press.

Shear, M. K., Frank, E., Houck, P. R., & Reynolds, C. F. (2005). Treatment of Complicated Grief: A Randomized Controlled Trial. JAMA, 293(21), pp. 2601โ€“2608. (Free PDF Download)

Stroebe, M., Schut, H., & Boerner, K. (2007). Cautioning Health-Care Professionals. Lancet, 370(9601), 1670โ€“1671.

I am not a medical or mental health provider. I am a Board Certified Hypnotist trained through the American School of Clinical Hypnosis. I am also a Certified Coach and Accredited Stress Coach. The work I do is to help clients regain confidence, overcome fears, and ease stresses. Those methods are supportive of this topic.

This resource is not a substitute for medical or medical health advice. If some issues are outside the scope of my practice, I can refer you to those best able to help.ย  I am obligated by an ethical standard to pursue the best care for you and operate within the scope of my training. In many cases, even if you are being seen by a medical professional, I can help you if I receive a medical referral.ย  This is common practice, as many doctors refer to certified consulting hypnotists to complement their plan of care.

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