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Knowledge of grief and loss has advanced over the past 20 years. On one hand, there is now acknowledgement that strict time frames cannot be attached to grief and loss. Generally people may progress through stages of grief and loss. “Time may heal wounds” and this process takes longer or shorter, depending on many factors. Giving people ample time to heal and adjust after loss appears the wise course.

On the other hand, advances in understanding the neurology and resilience of brains has influenced our perception of issues like loss and grief. Alongside neuro-biological processes are human capacities for psychological change. These studies increase our appreciation for methods in neuro-linguistic and experiential psychotherapy. Along with these approaches stands creative arts-based, music, and ritual-as-therapy methods that are supported by transpersonal psychology.

At the basis of these methods in psychotherapy is the way that memory and emotion works in tandem with unconscious emotional states to form associations and responses. These responses arise in unconscious attachment to memories and things familiar. The method suggests that working with this underlying internal process in therapy may create relief and open up choices for people who otherwise tend to feel overwhelmed and “stuck” in patterns of loss and grief or other powerful emotions.

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