What is the theory behind this Therapy Grief Worksheet?
Grief therapy or counselling helps individuals who are struggling with moving on after experiencing the loss of a loved one in their life. Grief is an inevitable part of life for all, but for some the resulting emotions become too overwhelming to bear, withdrawing them from seeking social support.. Using worksheets in grief therapy can help such individuals express their emotions and feelings and determine where they stand in the grief process.
How will the worksheet help?
This worksheet will guide clients about the five stages of grief as proposed by Kubler-Ross and Kessler. It is important for them to understand that grieving is a normal process that runs its due course and there is no harm in seeking help to get through it. It will also help them reflect on where they currently stand in the grieving process.
How to use the worksheet?
This information worksheet can be handed to clients in the initial stages of grief therapy sessions to familiarise them with what they are going through and where they currently stand. Ask your clients to go through the content of the infosheet and get back to you with questions.
Therapy Grief Worksheet
Grieving is a normal process that many of us have to go through at least once in our lives. All your feelings and emotions are valid. Usually people go through these five stages in the grieving process all in their own time. Some may take longer on one stage and shorter on others, the process is unique for everyone. Some may even regress back to earlier stages and keep going back and forth till they have made peace with it.
Read through these five stages and determine where you currently stand in the grieving process.
|The very first stage that you enter immediately after hearing the devastating news. You may feel like nothing matters anymore or that life from now on holds no meaning to you. You may feel numb and unable to move on. |
Denial is nature’s way of giving us time to process the loss at our own pace. With time, you will have begun to accept what has happened and let your guards down to let yourself feel all the emotions you were keeping in.
|The first emotion you will feel will be anger. It could be anger directed at yourself or others or the unfair circumstances that took your loved ones away from you. At the surface it will always be anger but underneath it all are so many other emotions at play. You are hurt inside and it is ok to let the anger come. |
This anger will give you strength to hold on when all seems lost. It will make you feel connected to this world that you thought held no meaning now.
|You are now at a stage where you are thinking you would do anything to bring back your loved one and restore your life to how it was. You are thinking of ways to commit yourself to something good for the rest of your life only if somehow your love can be returned to you. |
You will find guilt to be the constant companion in this stage. The ‘what-if?’ and ‘if-only’ scenarios are wreaking havoc in your mind. You are avoiding your pain by living in the past thinking about all that could have been done differently.
|You are now fully in the present and have accepted no amount of anything will bring your loved one back and life has to go on as is. This is not the same as the mental illness but a normal stage in the grieving process where you withdraw from others and wonder if there is any point in going on like this. |
You may now accept your pain, guilt and all the overwhelming emotions that you were avoiding leading to crying spells and long bouts of sadness. But this is a precursor to acceptance and a necessary stage in the healing process.
|You have now accepted the reality of the situation. It does not mean you are completely ok and have returned to normality as before. It just means you have come to accept the situation as logically as possible and decided life must move on either way. |
You will begin to feel and live again all in due time. You may even feel like you are betraying your loved one by doing so.
Kubler-Ross, E. & Kessler, D. (2005). On Grief and Grieving: Finding the Meaning of Grief Through the Five Stages of Loss. Simon & Schuster.
You can download this worksheet here.