Has someone in your life just passed away? Bereavement is a normal response to a death, and it includes a wide variety of grieving and mourning responses.
Sometimes, we can make a bad thing worse. Learning to let go is a process, and we can make it easier by first letting go of beliefs that block our healing.
Rational Emotive Behavioral Therapy (REBT) was founded by Dr. Albert Ellis in 1955. Still in use internationally, it teaches that how we feel and behave are largely a result of what we think and believe to be true.
If you are experiencing unhealthy negative emotions in relation to grieving, using ideas from REBT can help.
What are unhealthy negative emotions? Not all negative emotions are unhealthy. Emotions which, over time, lead to negative outcomes physically, emotionally, behaviorally, or socially are considered unhealthy negative emotions. They include depression, anger/rage, anxiety/panic, embarrassment, guilt, and shame.
What's a sign that my negative emotions have become unhealthy? One sign is that they've lead to dysfunctional behaviors to alleviate them (such as substance abuse, procrastination, acting-out, self-harm, rage attacks, and more). Complicated bereavement might be curtailed by reducing unhealthy emotions during your mourning.
What causes unhealthy negative emotions? Self-disturbing ideas that you believe and reinforce cause these. As you reinforce these, you trap yourself into the ideas and the patterns they create. Learning to use REBT can release you from these traps.
Here are 6 idea-traps that some people have about grief and REBT arguments to get you out of these traps.
REBT encourages you to realize that it is normal to have thoughts and feelings in response to a loss; if you release your imperatives and decrease self-disturbing ideas, a loss that is already very hard doesn’t have to become too hard.
To learn more about techniques for talking to yourself and learning to shift your mood and behavior, check out The REBT Super Activity Guide and visit http://www.myinnerguide.com for teleseminars on various psychology topics.
photo credit : Pam Garcy © 2013