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Grief Counseling: Signs It's Time To Hire a Professional

Updated: Jan 16

Grief is a complex emotion to process. It’s even more challenging when we try to navigate it independently. The good news is that grief counselors can offer the tools you need to mourn your loss healthily.

But how can you know when it’s time to seek professional help? Well, we’ve compiled a shortlist of things indicative of overwhelming grief to help you answer that question.

You Have Experienced a Loss

Experiencing significant loss is the surest sign it’s time to hire a professional for grief counseling. Grief is a mysterious emotional experience that is difficult to process. So anyone who is in mourning can undoubtedly benefit from professional help.

Additionally, it’s worth remembering that grief doesn’t always entail death. Grief is often worn by those recovering from:

  1. Divorce or separation

  2. Family trauma or abuse

  3. Loss of a home

There are many types of grief; they’re all valid, and those suffering can benefit from counseling.

You Can’t Seem To Move Forward

Grieving looks different for everyone, so there isn’t a timeline for “getting back to normal.” Thus, it’s perfectly fine to take the time you need to heal. But suppose you start to feel like life ended with your loss, and there is no longer anything to look forward to.

If so, it’s a strong sign it’s time to hire a professional for grief counseling. These counselors understand grief in a way that most others don’t. Because of this, they can offer the proper tools, techniques, and strategies to help make sense of all that you’re feeling.

With their guidance, you can learn to move forward and start enjoying your life again. For this reason, grief counselors are one of the best resources available to you after a loss.

Your Grief Interferes With Your Work

After a loss, it’s going to take a few months for you to get back to a more typical work routine. That said, suppose you find that months have passed, and you still can’t complete your work effectively.

If so, it might be time for a professional to step in. Counselors can offer guidance, techniques, and new skills to help you improve your performance at work or in school as you healthily process your loss.

You Exhibit Signs of Depression

Before we delve into this next section, remember that grief and depression are not the same things. That said, without the proper coping tools, grief can quickly transform into depression. For this reason, it’s wise to understand the critical differences between the two:

  1. Those who are depressed tend to focus on themselves.

Those grieving will focus on the loss.

  1. Depression causes feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and low self-esteem.

Grief brings fleeting feelings of guilt, but otherwise will not affect your self-esteem.

  1. People experiencing depression typically feel numb.

Those grieving will experience a wide array of emotions as they process.

Because depression can be detrimental to your emotional, mental, and physical health, we urge you not to ride it out alone. If you experience these feelings or other signs of depression resulting from grief, please reach out to a professional counselor.

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