What is Grief Coaching
Grief is an inevitable part of life that touches all of us all at some point. We suffer grief not only when we lose a loved one but in other types of losses as well. Many situations in life cause us face the emotions of grief, for example in addition to the most prevalent, the death of a loved one, grief may also impact you due to a loss of a pet, a divorce or breakup or a child who has left home, a loved one with a life-threatening illness, retirement, loss of a home or a financial burdens. Grief is any situation in life that results in the feelings and emotions of grief and unless we deal with them can keep us in a place of lingering pain and lack of joy.
Why do we grieve? We grieve because we loved the person or thing that brought joy to our lives is now gone. It is the natural emotions we feel and though we cannot avoid the things that cause grief, we can learn how to deal with grief when it happens, in a healthy, productive way, to minimize its duration and help us resume a fully productive life filled with happiness.
A challenge is that we have never been taught how to grieve and in fact, society limits our grieving time when you lose someone due to death you typically only get a few days off from work. In reality, it can take someone up to 5- 8 years to recover from the loss of a loved one.
A typical person may go through the five stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance) and without help and understanding and to learn how to deal with the emotions you may remain stagnant in your grief. In some cases, you may not experience all of these stages or you may process them in different orders. There is no right order; your journey is unique to you. Learning how to deal with grief can reduce that time down to months. Imagine being able to find peace and move forward. For those experiencing loss and are overcome with grief, if they do not ignore or run from it and instead face it by working through processes and techniques to find your “new” normal and most importantly restore joy into your life. This is where Grief coaching can help.
It is important to know that grief coaching is not going to answer all the “why” questions, we may never know the “why”, but coaching can help you process through the emotions and feelings to move forward in life. It is not about saying move on and get over it, that’s not what moving forward and finding peace means. Coaching recognizes that despite your grief, you have a right to live a happy life. We do not choose grief, but you can choose to take the steps to be able to move forward and find happiness while keeping the memories alive and even finding joy in those memories.
The basic premise of grief coaching is to provide a support system in a safe environment to help you discover and develop strategies to overcome the challenge of looking ahead while facing the pain of loss. To discuss the loss and explore what it means to them. Grief coaches use fundamental tools and methods used to work the transformational process as we deal with the stages of grief and emotions to moving to a place of acceptance and peace.
What can you expect from a grief coach? First of all, coaching is about becoming proactive in your healing process, accountable for making changes to expedite the process from years to months. Not everyone is ready to do the work towards healing and that is fine. If you are not sure, a coach will typically provide you with a readiness assessment that allows both yourself and the coach to determine readiness. These may include the following:
- I have a genuine desire and need to renew my joy and strength. I am willing to stretch and change as needed for my joy to be restored
- I am willing to try new ways of thinking or different ways of doing things to see results
- I value collaboration and am willing to ask for help when I need it.
- I am open to feedback from my coach and others
- I am willing to invest in the necessary time and finances in coaching
- I will make coaching a priority for at least three months
- I am candid and open with others
- I am willing to put in the work to move towards a place of peace
Grief coaching will focus on the present moment (where you are now) and the future (where you want to be) and then using practical application of the methods and exercises to help individuals those suffering to participate in and face their grief. Major areas of focus are:
- A safe place for healthy dialogue and compassionate understanding.
- It helps you understand that each person’s response to grief is unique.
- It offers personalized help to manage and overcome grief with solutions.
- It provides support to help find life’s meaning and purpose after a reasonable period of grief.
- It allows clients to understand grief is a natural human response to death or a tragic situation.
- Help develop a short term, “what’s next”, plan for their lives.
- Provide individuals with hope, motivation, and direction to take control of their lives
- Most importantly, a grief coach can provide an ear; someone who will just listen, at times of extreme sorrow, confusion, and loss, lending an ear may be what is needed most.
In addition to those listed above, my coaching which is faith-based, and my dual certification as a Christian Grief Coach and a Joy Restoration Coach also focus on several critical areas including:
- Baseline happiness assessment to evaluate focus area’s that will drive our coaching sessions
- Re-evaluation after several sessions so you can see the progress you are making
- Gratitude journaling
- Forgiveness and completion of Grief (exercises) and expression of feelings
- Moving focus from the problem to solutions, focusing on the most critical area’s
- Teach “Brain Sweep” explaining how our brains work, toxic thoughts and how to control them
- Comfort Zone exercises to move you that are holding you back from moving forward
- Establish a Healthy Lifestyle (GREN – Grooming, Rest, Exercise and Nutrition)
- Design a New Lifestyle – your new “normal” using VOG (Values, Objectives, and Goals)
I work closely with you not only during our sessions but am available for prayer, support, questions and support in between our coaching sessions. An important element is that I listen, I am flexible to spend the time with you. This is critical for me while I review exercises, compare assessments, provide you with encouragement and feedback and be flexible to adjust our course of action based on prayerful guidance.
As someone who has suffered much grief, I am passionate about helping you find peace and move forward.
If you have any questions, feel free to comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . A readiness assessment and initial consultation are free to determine this is right for you.
Love and peace,