Tips for Surviving Grief During the Holidays

With any approaching holiday, feelings of sadness may arise even before the festivities begin. Knowing this can help you prepare for the additional emotional and physical stress that the holidays can trigger. When your loved one’s birthday or any of the dates you once celebrated together are coming up, take care of yourself and find joy by observing some of these tips.

  • Celebrate your loved one’s memory. Acknowledge their presence by lighting a candle in their memory or doing what they used to enjoy during the holidays. Or, volunteer to help someone out or give a gift to someone in need on behalf of your special person.
  • Talk to your loved one, letting them know how much you miss them and still love them. Don’t keep the love you have for them in your heart, share it with them and other people around you.
  • Be open with your friends and family about what you can handle and what you prefer to avoid. If having people over is too much, let everyone know and ask others to take your place.
  • Be sensitive about other family member’s feelings. They are also affected by grief, so plan events together and respect each others’ choices.
  • Make changes to old routines and traditions if that would feel more comfortable. For example, instead of gathering in the morning, meet and exchange gifts in the evening.
  • Make sure you are getting enough rest. The additional stress can cause fatigue. Always make sure you are drinking enough water to keep you hydrated.
  • Release your grief by crying freely. When that wave passes, start having fun. Laughter and joy is the best medicine for the holiday blues.
  • Find some purposeful pleasure, like a walk in the woods. Perhaps listen to uplifting music, or call a friend for a movie or brunch. Include plenty of exercise, like a dance or yoga class. And consider the benefits of meditation.
  • Schedule additional sessions with your Grief Coach. They will help you come to a peaceful place during this time. If you don’t have the support of a Grief Coach, this would be a great time to start working with one.

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