Coping with the Holidays While Grieving

For those who are grieving, the holidays can be a struggle. As we navigate this particular holiday season it is even more important to shed light, give space, and offer strategies to cope with the upcoming holidays.

Remember these 3 C’s: 1) Communicate; 2) Choice; and 3) Compromise.

  • Plan ahead and don’t let the holiday “take you by surprise”. Expect grief surges this month. While our emotions routinely surprise us and may even overwhelm us, it may be empowering to strategize how you will manage the day(s) ahead.
  • Stay connected and don’t do it alone! Although this may be a challenge during this time, connection is more important than ever. Talk with your family, friends, and children about how to make the day manageable and even meaningful.
  • Take time to think about your unique rituals related to specific holidays, and whether you want to keep them the same, modify them, get rid of them, and/or create new ones. This is a fluid process and flexibility is key.
  • Take care of yourself! This is extremely difficult for most of us, but it is especially challenging while one is grieving. Create as conducive an environment as possible so that you are eating, sleeping, and exercising in a healthy manner. A little self-care can go a long way.
  • Give yourself permission to “lose it” from time to time! The idea of “good enough” can be very helpful. Try to focus on the steps rather than simply the outcome and be gentle with yourself.
  • BREATHE DEEPLY AND SLOWLY… allowing yourself to get through moment to moment if that’s what you need.