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Mindful Grief: Mindfulness Techniques to Address Avoidance and Improve Emotional Regulation in Grief Treatment

Debra Alvis, Ph.D.
Approx. 6 Hours
May 05, 2021
PESI, Inc.
Product Code:
Media Type:
DVD - Also available: Digital Seminar | Live Webinar

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For grieving clients, the present moment can be terrifying. Painful and uncomfortable emotions push them to avoid their grief or rush past it without truly feeling it.

But when your clients can’t accept being with their grief in the now, they don’t just “get over it.” Those emotions keep coming back. Each time a little more powerful, a little more painful, and with a little more self-judgement.

Without sitting with their grief, willingly experiencing and processing it, healing can’t begin.

Mindfulness-based interventions give you the tools you need to help clients be with their grief – allowing them to better accept loss, experience their’ feelings without judgement, and transform their perspective so they can discover glimmers of joy amidst the sadness and open themselves to new possibilities, meaning and purpose.

Watch international mindfulness expert and trainer Dr. Debra Alvis as she shares the exercises and techniques she’s found most effective in over 25 years of practice so you can help your grieving clients:

  • Summon the courage to sit with grief and overcome avoidance
  • Open themselves to uncomfortable and painful emotions
  • Recognize and manage the physical symptoms of grief that manifest in the body
  • Disempower intrusive thoughts and feelings of self-judgement and blame

PLUS you’ll get scripts and clear instructions on guided meditations making it easy for you to incorporate these strategies into your grief work and use them right away!

Don’t miss this chance to add these valuable tools to your treatment toolbox so you can help clients be present with their grief, fully process it, and rediscover a life worth living!

purchase today!


CE Information Coming Soon

Continuing education credit information is coming soon for this non-interactive self-study package.

CEs may be available for select professions, as listed in the target audience. Hours will be dependent on the actual recording time. Please check with your state licensing board or organization for specific requirements. 

There may be an additional fee for CE certificates. Please contact our Customer Service at 1-800-844-8260 for more details. 

**Materials that are included in this course may include interventions and modalities that are beyond the authorized practice of mental health professionals. As a licensed professional, you are responsible for reviewing the scope of practice, including activities that are defined in law as beyond the boundaries of practice in accordance with and in compliance with your professions standards.


Debra Alvis, Ph.D.'s Profile

Debra Alvis, Ph.D. Related seminars and products: 10

Debra Alvis, Ph.D., is a licensed psychologist, professor, and workplace wellness consultant whose trainings to address compassion fatigue have helped healthcare and mental health professionals around the country, including the medical staff at a flagship state university health center.

Over the last 20 years Dr. Alvis has designed individualized and group programs to promote stress hardiness, work-life balance, and resiliency for nurses, physicians, social workers, counselors, and others working in jobs with excessive demands on their empathy. Her work in a range of medical and mental health settings provides her with a keen understanding of these demands and the potential impact on professionals across disciplines.

Dr. Alvis also developed and led the Mind/Body Program at the University of Georgia that specializes in addressing anxiety, stress, and depression in individuals with physical health concerns and co-morbid mental health issues.

Dr. Alvis lectures, leads retreats around the world, and maintains a private practice in Georgia where she treats clients with anxiety, trauma, shame, depression and relational concerns. She continues to serve as a professor at the University of Georgia where she supervises the clinical work of doctoral students, teaches health psychology, and co-leads a research team.


Speaker Disclosures:
Financial: Debra Alvis is in private practice. Dr. Alvis receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.
Non-financial: Debra Alvis has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.

Additional Info

Program Information

Access for Self-Study (Non-Interactive)

Access never expires for this product.


  1. Investigate how the impact of mindfulness-based interventions on emotional regulation can facilitate client coping.
  2. Assess grief treatment implications of positive correlations between mindfulness practices and increases in non-reactivity and self-compassion.
  3. Evaluate how the non-judgmental focus on the present moment of mindfulness practices can help grieving clients with experiential avoidance issues.
  4. Analyze the neurological mechanisms contributing to various outcomes in grief.
  5. Evaluate the clinical implications of reduced trauma symptomology following mindfulness-based interventions on the treatment of traumatic grief.
  6. Investigate how the demonstrated efficacy of mindfulness-based interventions in reducing anxiety symptoms can inform the treatment plan of clinicians working with bereaved clients experiencing grief related anxieties.


Models and Types of Grief
  • The uniqueness of grief
  • Mapping the journey
  • Grief as a spiral staircase
  • Diagnostic criteria
  • How to identify and adapt to individual grief styles
Mindfulness Strategies to Address Grief Avoidance
  • Resolve ambivalence in grief with “find middle ground exercises”
  • A sacred memory walk – combine talk therapy with mindful movement
  • Move beyond the waterfall of grief with compassionate non-judging
  • The Mustard Seed – metaphors for loss
Mindful Body Awareness and Body-Based Approaches:
Shift Clients from High-Alert and Shut Down Reponses Following Traumatic Loss
  • The neurophysiology of grief
  • How grief interrupts normal brain functioning
  • How to serve as a safety and connection anchor
  • Exercises to strengthen resiliency
    • A Heart-Opening Playlist
    • Precious Memories Altar
    • Colors for Grounding and Calm
    • Muscle tension releasing – exercises to counter fight or flight responses
Calming and Grounding Techniques for Grief Related Anxieties
  • A grief triggers chart
  • Grounding exercises and sample scripts
  • Guided meditations to disempower intrusive thoughts following loss
  • Self-soothe with calming words and imagery
  • 5 effective exercises to help clients breathe through anxiety
Finding Meaning After Loss
  • Find new meaning and purpose with “tobe” lists
  • Grief as love - continuing the relational bond after death
  • Help clients find meaning through traditions
The Mindful Grief Practitioner
  • The latest research on therapists who practice mindfulness
  • Cultural sensitivity and individualizing your approach
  • Compassion fatigue resiliency strategies
  • When practitioner grief arises – body/mind cues for presence
  • Research, limitations and treatment risks

Target Audience

  • Counselors
  • Social Workers
  • Marriage and Family Therapists
  • Psychologists
  • Psychiatrists
  • Case Managers
  • Addiction Counselors
  • Nursing Home Administrators
  • Pastoral Counselors
  • Chaplains/Clergy
  • Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners
  • Mental Health Nurses
  • Thanatologists


Satisfaction Guarantee
Your satisfaction is our goal and our guarantee. Concerns should be addressed to: PO Box 1000, Eau Claire, WI 54702-1000 or call 1-800-844-8260.

ADA Needs
We would be happy to accommodate your ADA needs; please call our Customer Service Department for more information at 1-800-844-8260.

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