loss and grief

Grief can feel very overwhelming. Whether it’s the death of a loved one, loss of friendship, loss of a job, end of a relationship, physical injury, loss of faith, personal dream or even minor losses, grief can leave a devastating impact on your life. A person who is dealing with Loss and Grief will most likely display some if not all of the emotional and physical symptoms listed below;


SYMPTOMS:

Increased irritability 

Digestive issues

Numbness

Fatigue

Bitterness

Sleep disturbances 

Anger 

Headaches

Detachment 

Chest pain  

Preoccupation with loss 

Sore muscles 

Inability to show or experience joy 

Feel nauseous 

Loneliness 

Sadness 

Loss of interest in hobbies

Loss of Faith


WHAT ARE THE 5 STAGES OF GRIEF?

While everyone experiences grief and loss differently, professionals have identified five common stages of grief. Everyone grieves differently in his or her way, and it is important to note this is not a linear process

  • Denial: The first reaction to hearing about a loss, illness, death, etc. is to think “this isn’t happening. It’s our minds way of protecting ourselves from the immediate shock. For most people experiencing grief, this stage is a temporary response that carries us through the first wave of pain. 


  • Anger: As the effects of denial wear off, reality, and the pain will re-emerge. Often this intense emotion can be redirected and expressed as anger and directed towards family, loved ones, ourselves, or even inanimate objects. 


  • Bargaining: During this stage, you dwell on what you could’ve done to prevent the loss. Common thoughts are “If only…” and “What if…” Here, we may make a deal with God or a Higher Power in an attempt to postpone your pain.


  • Depression: Sadness sets in as you begin to understand the loss and its effect on your life. Signs of depression include crying, sleep issues, and a decreased appetite. You may feel overwhelmed, regretful, and lonely.


  • Acceptance: In this final stage of grief, you accept the reality of your loss. It can’t be changed. Although you still feel sad, you’re able to start moving forward with your life.


HOW CAN COUNSELLING HELP?


The grieving process involves many difficult and complicated emotions. Counselling can help you process the impact of shock, denial, anxiety and fear you may be experiencing. It can help you adapt to the changes, bring order back into your daily life while you continue to grieve. It can help you to transform your thinking, or bring in a new perspective regarding your loss, e.g. looking for new meaning or purpose, or strategies on how to readjust to sudden changes. 


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