Hope for the Holidays
Holidays are often times of family gatherings filled with memories, traditions, extra demands and activities. People everywhere are celebrating but for those who grieve the death of a family member it can be a very sad and exhausting time. Taking care of yourself during this vulnerable time is very important. Perhaps these tips will make this season less stressful for you.
As you go through this list with your family, brainstorm ways that will help you to find hope during this holiday season.
Plan ahead – What are some family traditions you may want to continue and what are some that may need to be changed or be eliminated? If you want to let the day pass quietly, then do so.
Accept your limitations - Grieving is hard work and tiring. It is ok to set limits and place yourself on a “stress reduction diet”. Be gentle with yourself, consider shopping online or give gift cards. Holiday parties are OK, but don’t feel guilty if you enjoy yourself.
Trim down to the essentials - Simplify! Focus on your “wants” not “shoulds”.
Talk with your family - Speak clearly about what you want and need. It is ok to ask for and accept help. Let your family know your expectations.
Strive for a balanced lifestyle - Getting plenty of rest, healthy eating and drinking, and exercising for stress relief are important for a balanced lifestyle.
Give yourself permission to be and to remember. Celebrate the memories you have of your loved one. Find a way to incorporate these memories in your time together as a family by giving yourself permission to remember.