Healing Grief At Work Conference Yields Good Advice

A recent Good Grief: A Mo(u)rning Conference in the Morning examined how grief can be addressed – and healed – in the workplace. “The session provided a clear understanding of how companies can prepare for and survive grief,” Los Gatos Chaplain Tom Jackson said after attending. “Our discussions ranged from dealing with the unexpected death of a charismatic leader to the aftermath of workplace violence.”
Each participant received a copy of Healing Grief at Work: 100 Practical Ideas After Your Workplace Is Touched by Loss, a book by Dr. Alan Wolfet. “Some of these ideas are important for Spiritual Care volunteers and clergy to remember when they are talking with someone who is grieving,” Chaplain Jackson added. For example, Dr. Wolfet warns that “well intention but misinformed friends” may give hurtful advice that sounds like this:
  • I know how you feel.
  • Get on with your life.
  • Keep your chin up.
  • It was God’s will.
  • Be glad it was quick.
  • Think of all you have to be thankful for.
  • Now you have an angel in heaven.
  • Time heals all wounds.
  • You’re strong, You’ll get through this.
“Don’t take this advice to heart,” Dr. Wolfet writes. “Such clichés are often offered because people don’t know what else to say. The problem is, phrases like these diminish your unique and significant loss.”

About The Rev. Thomas C. Jackson

Ordained to the priesthood in December, 2010.
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