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How the 5 Stages of Grief Help—and Their Misuse can Hurt—Your Clients

As a trained therapist, you’re likely familiar with the pivotal work of Swiss-American psychiatrist Elisabeth Kübler-Ross and her model of the 5 stages of dying.

Elisabeth knew they were being misinterpreted. So, she recruited her friend David Kessler to co-author a book adapting her stages of dying to stages of grief. The result was the classic book, On Grief and Grieving.

The profound effect of the 5 Stages of Grief cannot be overstated. It has been instrumental in helping therapists around the world help their clients through grief. They give a reassuring structure to the unknown terrain of grief.

However, the “stages model” has created some misuse and simplification that Elisabeth never intended…

Such as the expectation that these stages are linear…

That people in grief move smoothly and simply from one stage to the next on a neat little timeline, with no overlap or backtracking.

The truth is, people in grief cannot—and should not—be classified by stage. Nor should we expect them to be further along in their grief than they are.

Grief just doesn’t work that way.

Elisabeth and David stressed that grief is highly personal. It’s messy. It defies logic and timelines and deadlines.

And yet, people still say well-meaning, hurtful things like, “It’s been a year, shouldn’t you be over him by now?”

Tone-deaf comments like these happen ALL the time because as a society, we don’t know how to talk about death. People are so uncomfortable with it they try to skip over it, and get others to do the same.

Fortunately, world-renowned grief and loss expert David Kessler, who worked by her side, has pioneered new methods and tools to help you better understand the art and science of caring for the grieving…

So you can help your clients create a healthy grieving process.

David Kessler is one of the world’s foremost experts on healing and loss. He’s written five bestselling books on the subject. He’s also coauthored two bestsellers with the legendary Elisabeth Kübler-Ross: On Grief & Grieving and Life Lessons.

He’s worked with Elizabeth Taylor, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Carrie Fisher after their loved ones died. He’s worked with survivors of 9/11, the Las Vegas shooting in 2017, and with the parents of Sandy Hook Elementary school students.

There are few people better qualified to teach these innovative counseling methods than David Kessler.
Discover Cutting-Edge Guidelines of Grief Treatment

These new approaches have evolved the 5 Stages Model, as well as other models, and are designed to help you meet your clients where they are in the grieving process—without classifying them or putting them on a timeline.

They give you the tools and language to talk with your clients about grief and grieving in deeper, more meaningful ways…

So your clients can feel free of internal judgment and shame, thinking they should be “grieving better” than they are because they’re making others uncomfortable.

You can access these breakthrough methods and grief treatments in an important, comprehensive course:
David Kessler on Healing Grief & Loss

$356.95 Value
Just $299.99 Today— Unbelievable Savings!
Plus, earn up to 8 CE Hours included in the course tuition. Click here for Credit details
In David Kessler on Healing Grief and Loss, you’ll explore:
  • The dynamics of different types of grief and the healing processes associated with each
  • Age-appropriate grieving milestones that occur across the lifespan
  • The somatic responses to grief, and how to identify and manage residual grief in the body
  • Why children are often the “forgotten grievers,” and strategies that can help this population
  • The effectiveness of positive psychology interventions in treating grief
  • The relationship between traumatic events and grief as it relates to the healing process
  • And SO much more!

To give you a comprehensive overview of these treatments methods and guidelines, David Kessler takes you through 13 unique and fascinating modules:
MODULE #1: How Death Shapes Each Type of Grief
  • Delayed
  • Disenfranchised
  • Ambiguous
  • Inconclusive
  • Complicated
  • Average response
  • Resilience
MODULE #2: Trauma
  • How we often re-traumatize ourselves in grief
  • Discover the difference between releasing grief and replaying traumatic events
  • How vicarious trauma can affect the clinician
MODULE #3: Positive Psychology and Grief
  • Understand how positive psychology can be used in healing grief
  • Understand why clients may treat themselves harshly in grief
  • Discover new ways to decrease suffering after a loss
MODULE #4: Anticipatory Grief
  • Discover treatment strategies that work
  • Learn how to use certain tools to help normalize anticipatory grief for your clients
  • Instead of asking, “How are you?” ask this question instead…
MODULE #5: The 5 Stages of Grief and How They Influence Our Healing After Loss
  • Review of the 5 stages
  • Explore the 6th stage of death and grieving
  • Recognize distinctions between depressive grief and clinical depression
  • Discover how the emotion of relief has its place in the grieving process
MODULE #6: Death and the Afterlife
  • The cultural meaning of angels in society as well as in death and dying
  • How Christian interpretations of the afterlife can influence your clients
  • How to handle clients who may be “haunted” by their loved ones
  • What are “deathbed visions” and how they differ from hallucinations
  • How the law validates the visions and declarations of the dying
MODULE #7: Grief and Forgiveness
  • Explore alternatives to forgiveness
  • Understand when forgiveness works and why it doesn’t
  • Discover techniques your clients can use to truly find forgiveness
MODULE #8: Tools for the Clinician to Help Clients Cope
  • How to handle ALL the holidays, not just Thanksgiving and Christmas
  • What to do when anniversaries of diagnosis, death, first wedding anniversary after death, etc. arise
  • How to handle other milestones, like birthdays
  • How your clients can renew their intimate lives after loss
  • Helping your clients find “closure”
  • Discover the best—and worst—things to say to someone in grief
  • How to avoid putting your clients on a timeline of grief
MODULE #9: Children in Grief
  • Discover tools for preparing children for loss
  • How to help kids participate in rituals of death and mourning
  • Understand normal grieving behavior in children
MODULE #10: Pet Loss
  • Learn why pet loss is just as significant as other losses
  • Understand why clients may not reveal loss of a pet
  • Discover new ways to help with feelings of exaggerated responsibility
MODULE #11: Self-Care for Clinician Working with Loss
  • Discover how to take care of yourself when you’re surrounded by loss
  • Understand why clinicians sometimes over-identify with clients
  • How to determine when it’s helpful to disclose your own personal losses
MODULE #12: Complicated Grief
  • Simplifying the model for greater understanding
  • How complicated grief differs from uncomplicated grief
  • How things like multiple losses, sudden death, Alzheimer's disease, and other factors can complicate grief—and how to help your clients manage them
MODULE #13: The Grief of Suicide
  • Understand how grief of suicide is different
  • Discover techniques for releasing feelings of responsibility
  • Tools for healing grief after a suicide
Not only will you discover these new methods and ideas, but in the course, David Kessler provides additional resources on these topics.

Plus, once you complete this course, you’ll have the opportunity to list yourself in a respected database of qualified grief counselors—completely FREE.

The most advanced training on grief and grieving can be yours today, at a significant discount.
David Kessler on Healing Grief & Loss

$356.95 Value
Just $299.99 Today— Unbelievable Savings!
Plus, earn up to 8 CE Hours included in the course tuition. Click here for Credit details
Order today and receive instant access to incredible bonus gifts!
(Value of $136.96)
Grief and Addiction
Free Bonus Video
The opioid epidemic has already claimed more than 700,000 American lives since 1999.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), an average of 130 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose.

People grieving deaths complicated by addiction often carry a large amount of shame, guilt, self-blame, “What if’s,” and “If only’s.”

This useful free video shows you how to:
  • Help your clients in addiction grief sort through the shame, isolation, and the roles they played in an addiction death
  • Understand survivor’s guilt
  • Use certain tools, like the 3C’s, to help your clients move through the grieving process
  • Understand why addiction grief is so often weighted in self-blame and guilt
  • And much more
Grief and Children
Free Bonus Video
When it comes to death and grief, a parent’s first instinct is to keep their children away from it in order to protect them.

But children actually do better with information and participation in death rituals than they do with mystery and isolation.

There are many ways parents can help their child move through grief in healthy ways. This groundbreaking video reveals:
  • How to help children prepare for loss
  • How different ages experience loss
  • How to explain death to small children
  • Helping children understand death rituals and objects of death, like caskets, and cemeteries
  • And more
Grief and the Afterlife
Free Bonus Video
Stories of the dead greeting the dying have been recorded in medical journals as far back as 1914. Yet, so many people still get “weirded out” when dying loved ones say they talked to people who have died.

This course helps you explore how the afterlife plays into grief so you can help normalize a lot of these common experiences. This eye-opening video reveals:
  • Deathbed visions and their impact on grief
  • Effective and ineffective ways for families to cope with deathbed and afterlife events
  • Clinical and palliative care studies and research of near-death awareness
  • How the law normalizes the dying experience
  • Hauntings the griever may experience in loss and how to normalize them
Healing Grief Card Deck
Free Card Deck
This easy-to-use, downloadable PDF card deck reveals 55 powerful practices to help your clients heal and rebuild after loss. They’re split into 3 categories:
  • Your response to loss
  • Understanding grief
  • Healing

Use them as prompts, or takeaways from sessions. They’ll help your clients heal—and remind them that their grief is evidence of their love.
"We know how to love people in their presence. In grief, we have to learn how to love them in their absence." – David Kessler
David Kessler on Healing Grief & Loss

$356.95 Value
Just $299.99 Today — Unbelievable Savings!
Meet the Course Expert:
David Kessler
David Kessler is one of the world’s foremost experts on healing and loss. His experience with thousands of people on the edge of life and death has taught him the secrets to living a happy and fulfilled life.

An accomplished speaker and author, David’s book, Finding Meaning: The Sixth Stage of Grief, released in November 2019 and has already been named one of the top 10 books for the fall by Publishers Weekly. His previous books have been praised by Saint (Mother) Teresa and Elisabeth Kübler Ross.

David has written five bestselling books and the popular Healing Grief Card Deck: 55 Practices to Find Peace. His first book, The Needs of the Dying, is a #1 best-selling end-of-life book.

He co-authored two bestsellers with the legendary Elisabeth Kübler-Ross: On Grief and Grieving and Life Lessons. He also co-authored You Can Heal Your Heart: Finding Peace After Breakup, Divorce or Death, with Louise Hay.

David has worked with Elizabeth Taylor, Jamie Lee Curtis, and Carrie Fisher after their loved ones died, as well as late actors Anthony Perkins and Michael Landon at the end of their lives. He serves as a Specialist Reserve Officer with the Los Angeles Police Department and as a volunteer for the American Red Cross, responding to tragic events including aviation disasters and 9/11.

In addition, he has met with parents of Sandy Hook Elementary and survivors of the Las Vegas shooting in 2017. He also serves on the board of the Farrah Fawcett Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides funding for cancer research. David’s work has been discussed in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Business Week and Life Magazine, and has been featured on CNN, NBC, Fox, PBS, Dr. Oz and Entertainment Tonight.

David earned a master’s degree in healthcare bioethics from Loyola Marymount University after completing his undergraduate work at the University of Southern California. He is a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives and is a certified AMA/EPEC (Education for Physicians) trainer. David is the founder of, an invaluable resource to those who are grieving that has had over 5 million visitors.

When he’s not speaking around the world, David calls Los Angeles home. Despite having spent most of his life teaching physicians, nurses, counselors, police officers and first responders about the end of life, trauma and grief, nothing could prepare him for the sudden death of his 21-year-old son in 2016. David’s work continues in honor of him.

There are few people better qualified to teach these pioneering counseling methods on grief and grieving than David Kessler.

Speaker Disclosures:

Financial: David Kessler is president of David Kessler, Inc. He is an author for Simon & Schuster – New York and receives royalties. Mr. Kessler receives a speaking honorarium from PESI, Inc.

Non-financial: David Kessler has no relevant non-financial relationship to disclose.
The Next Steps in Advancing Your Practice
After you order, just follow these next steps to transform the way you help your clients work through grief and find meaning in loss.
Watch your email for your order confirmation and get instant access to all course materials, including the bonus materials. Click here for course objectives and outline.
Review the course materials at your own pace and at your convenience! You'll have unlimited access to all course videos and materials online forever. Plus, use the PESI Mobile™ app to access the course content on-the-go, wherever and whenever you want on your mobile devices.
Instantly collaborate with other professionals on the course materials through interactive message boards. When you enroll in this course, you’ll join a community of hundreds of practitioners focused on using these tools to help clients heal and rebuild after loss. Use this valuable connection to share insight and experiences, and to build your professional network.
Complete your online CE tests and earn up to 8 CE hours! Click here for Credit details and credit details specific to your profession.
100% Satisfaction Guarantee
Register for this intensive training course without risk. If you're not completely satisfied, give us a call at 800-844-8260. We're that confident you'll find this learning experience to be all that's promised and more than you expected.
David Kessler on Healing Grief & Loss

$356.95 Value
Just $299.99 Today — Unbelievable Savings!
Plus, earn up to 8 CE Hours included in the course tuition. Click here for Credit details
NOTE: No additional discounts or coupons may be applied to this course.
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