Women's Journal

Understanding Memory Loss: Vicki Mizel’s Insights on Grief Management and Cognitive Therapy

Understanding Memory Loss: Vicki Mizel's Insights on Grief Management and Cognitive Therapy
Photo Courtesy: Vicki Mizel

By: Angel Tuccy

Vicki Mizel is a cognitive or memory therapist who has helped those with bright minds, dementia, Alzheimer’s, and brain injuries bring back their memories. She’s also helped herself recover from brain injuries caused by severe life-threatening accidents: a car accident in 1999 and as a pedestrian in 2016. Vicki Mizel, known to those she has helped as a Memory Maven, has been teaching and training in memory techniques for thirty-three years. 

In addition, Vicki gained more insight into the illness of Alzheimer’s and Dementia while teaching in seven different assisted living homes by working with and listening to the resident’s stories. “I could see trends in those who got memory illnesses and those who didn’t. Many people went through the loss of a spouse, a job, or even the loss of a child. However, some stayed mentally fine while others didn’t. I hypothesized that the co-dependent personality once they suffered a significant loss came from the feeling of losing themselves.”

In her book, “Love Remembers,” Vicki talks about how when someone loses something or someone equal to their sense of self and self-esteem, it can cause severe grief, which often leads to depression. Staying in that depressive state too long can cause the brain to atrophy. Mizel suggests grieving, whether in a grief group or with a professional therapist. To suppress the grief can ultimately lead to a form of dementia, as the emotional needs need to be felt, heard, and released. Vicki noticed that individuals who refrained from grieving were more prone to memory loss. In her book, she recounts her grandmother’s experience, where she was advised to stop grieving and told that it was enough.

Not only does grief need to be dealt with, but creating a new passion and purpose is highly recommended. Vicki developed the Brain Sprouts Memory Program to teach an effective way to remember important things, such as names, events, and stories. Students learn how to create new pictures, create an action plan, and gain purpose. Having a purpose with passion gives them energy and the drive to thrive in life once again.

“In the case of Wendy Williams,” says Mizel, “She’s had a series of serious losses. She lost her husband. She lost her mother. She lost her job, which was her passion and a large part of her purpose. She lost her health. That’s a lot of loss and a lot to comprehend. She also had trauma in her early career. She was abused by her first real boyfriend. When they broke up, she lost her good credit standing. Wendy used substances from time to time as self-soothing, which was not healthy for her body. All this loss in life is equal to one’s sense of self and self-esteem.” 

Vicki shares, “If I were to write a treatment plan for Wendy, to start, I would suggest to her what I did for myself. The keys are memory training for focus, sharpness, agility of the brain, concentration, oxygen, and certain supplements that may help brain function.”

Mizel says, “It is my passion and desire to share this knowledge with others who are suffering because there is a way to improve our mind and body.”

About Vicki Mizel

Vicki Mizel received training in education, psychology, acting, and public speaking. Since 1983, she has been instructing individuals in her Brain Sprouts Memory System. Over time and with practice, this method has been observed to enhance neuro connectivity and neural regeneration in the brain, promoting increased brain activity and healing. Throughout her professional journey, Mizel has collaborated with diverse groups, including school children, university students, CEOs, and actors, as well as individuals with brain injuries, dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease. 

 

Published by: Khy Talara

 

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