Coping With the Holidays

The holidays can be an especially tough time for anyone that has experienced a significant emotional loss. During the holiday season, certain triggers can bring on memories and feelings about loved ones that are deceased or who are no longer present during the celebrations. Even though many of the holiday rituals and routines involve being around family and friends, you may not feel up for celebrating as you have in the past. Here are some ways to cope with the holidays:

Express feelings – Allow yourself to think about and remember your loved one. Talk about your loved one to someone you trust. Tell others that you would like to talk about your loved one and want to listen to others share fond memories as well. Remind others to listen instead of give advice.

Avoid misusing food and alcohol – Overindulging in food and alcohol can be an indirect, and sometimes damaging way, of avoiding our feelings. Often times people think eating comfort foods or drinking alcohol can take away the emotional pain you may be feeling. While it seems to be helping in the moment, it is not. It is only covering up feelings of sadness.

Be around others – Engage in activities that help you feel connected to others. Be around people who you love. Share your time, skills and talents with others. This can be a great way to lift your spirits and lessen your burdens.

Keep your normal routine – Adjusting your life after a significant loss can be one of the biggest changes you’ve experienced. During this difficult transition, other major changes are not advisable. Maintain your regular routines without much disruption.

Be kind to yourself – Expect and allow yourself to feel different emotions including anger, sadness or loneliness. Or you may feel a sense of joy and happiness while connecting to others and creating new traditions. There is nothing selfish about any of the feelings you may feel.

From My Heart To Yours,

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