Grief Coaching


“In the end, as we as human beings mourn, we must discover meaning to go on living our tomorrows” ~ Wolfelt (2005)

This course will assist those interested in becoming coaches who support, encourage, and help clients discover the meaning of life after the death of a loved one. This course will also aid coaches in helping clients identify life going forward, visualizing the future without their loved one, discovering challenges associated with their grief, moving past those challenges, and helping clients refocus on life’s goals and possibilities. Students will learn valuable coaching strategies that can be used to help grieving clients begin to find hope, tap into their strengths, to not only survive but to ultimately thrive.

Case studies, role playing, and hands-on approaches will be used in this course.

At the end of the course, students will be able to:

  • Define losses and the different types of grief.
  • Discuss the various responses to grief.
  • Differentiate between grief coaching, grief counseling, and grief therapy.
  • Determine when grief is complicated and pathological and when to refer clients to a licensed mental health professional.
  • Understand the Wolfelt’s 11 Tenets of partnering or companioning those who are grieving and how they correspond to the ICF Core Competencies.
  • Learn techniques which can help clients move beyond the grieving process to begin thinking about the possibilities going forward.
  • Understand the dynamics associated with grieving children and various techniques and methods to help them express their feelings.
  • Understand spiritual and faith values of your client and the importance of a client’s faith when grieving, and how to use those as part of coaching sessions.
  • Learn effective and healthy ways of caring for self.
  • Utilize and link clients to other resources and services.

Required Textbook:

Companioning the Bereaved: A Soulful Guide for Counselors & Caregivers
Wolfelt, Alan, D. (2005). Fort Collins, CO: Companion Press.

Optional Textbooks:

Good Grief
Westberg, Granger, E. (2011). Minneapolis, MN: Fortress Press.

Experiencing Grief
Wright, H. Norman (2004). Nashville, Tennessee: B & H Publishing Group.

Frequency: This course is offered 2 or 3 times a year and class size is limited.

Course Prerequisites

20 hours of coach training or previous experience in related helping professions


I was so happy when the Grief Coaching course was offered through ILCT. Lisa's teaching style was perfect for me. She covered the delicate topic of grief with such patience and compassion. She encouraged all of us to share as much as we needed to and nobody was ever left out. The skills she taught the class and the tools she shared have become invaluable to my coaching practice.

- S. L.

Lisa a very gifted teacher and was so great at explaining grief and coaching. I really appreciated her sharing all of the very useful resources.

- K.B.

Lisa is a strength based teacher who looks for the positive in people and situations and that is an excellent teaching style in the field of grief coaching and life in general.

- C.H.

This grief coaching course has given me the support I need both for myself and my clients. I feel resourced and empowered to continue learning about grief and loss as it pertains to coaching.

- C.P.