The festive season is typically known for being full of good will and cheer. But it’s not always a happy time for everyone.
The holidays can be a stressful time, especially when grief is involved. We’ve put together some tips for people dealing with grief and the impending festive season. Little tips that we hope will help make this time less stressful and more enjoyable for you. With grief in tow, it’s hard when life is not the same anymore. Whether you’re adjusting to a new normal, or living as best you can with the change, we hope you find peace, goodness and happiness during the holiday season.
Tips For Dealing with Grief During The Festive Season
1. Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate
Avoid taking on any tasks that you know will stress you.
Push back, kindly say no, or suggest another alternative.
You might be someone who is used to handling everything themselves and feel you need to step up. Remember that just because you may have done something in the past, doesn’t mean that it always has to be done that way. People will understand if you’re not up for organizing tasks for the holidays.
What does this look like? It means pushing back on things like this:
- have the gathering at someone else’s house,
- get other people bring food,
- tell people they can’t stay the night
- tell people in advance that you will attend between 12-2pm, so you have the freedom to leave
- ask people not to drop in unannounced
- don’t answer the phone if you don’t want to. Message them back later.
Do whatever works for you. Your friends and family who know you and love you will understand.
2. It’s Ok to Scale Back the Festivities
Anyone who’s grieving will probably dread having to attend a party. Sitting there pretending to be happy is difficult, downright exhausting, and only adds to the stress.
Surround yourself with people who make you feel good. Smaller gatherings might be more suitable. That way there’s less pressure, but there’s still important, quality time spent with loved ones.
As much as you may not want to attend any festive gathering, try to remember that you will find some comfort being around loved ones and people who care about you.
3. Old or New Traditions Are Both OK
Some people who grieve while they organize the holidays want to keep the old traditions in memory of the loved one they’ve lost. Others want to start new traditions to begin to heal and move on. It’s very important to understand that both of those options are ok, and there’s no right or wrong answer to the idea of how to handle traditions.
Focus on whatever brings comfort. Honoring someone who has been lost is particularly meaningful throughout the holiday season.
4. Don’t Forget to Care for Yourself
Self care is a high priority. There’s a saying, that people can’t pour from an empty cup. It means that if a person doesn’t have anything in themselves, they won’t be able to give to others.
For those who are grieving, feeling empty and out of energy, time, and effort is common. Rest, good food, taking a walk, watching a TV show, or any other kind of self-care routine that helps should be considered. Make time for that, and there will be more energy for others, as well. Organizing for the holidays can still be done, even when taking time out to work on feeling better.
5. Forgive Yourself if Things Aren’t Perfect
If this is the first holiday season after the loss of a loved one, it’s important for anyone who’s grieving to acknowledge that things will not be perfect. You’re adjusting to a new life.
Grief is unpredictable, it washes you over you when you think you have it under control. Be kind to yourself, keep expectations balanced, and ride any wave of happiness as it comes your way. Guilt-free.
6. Understand That You Will Get Through It, Somehow
The first holiday after a loss is generally the hardest one to get through. They say “time heals” wounds, that “things get easier”. Others dealing with loss say that life becomes different. Adjusting to a “new normal”. It’s not easy, but you will find a way to face it everyday. It’s important to move forward. Sometimes you might pass the day minute by minute. Other days will be easier to handle. While at no time will you have forgotten the heartache, but you will find ways to deal with your life in a new way.
So to our lovely members and followers dealing with grief this festive season, we are thinking of you, wish you well and hope you enjoy this time of year as much as possible. We do have a special FREE offer below on our Thanksgiving and Christmas Planners, feel free to share with your family and friends.
If you like our to-do lists and planners, you might like our Holiday Planners. They include planners for the Christmas and Thanksgiving seasons; perfect if you need some help getting organized this holiday.
What’s Included In The Holiday Planners Pack?
Whatever you need help with, we have it covered with these worksheets:
- Christmas Gift Ideas
- Christmas Gifts Given
- Christmas Gifts Received
- Christmas Gifts Budget Planner
- Christmas Card/Call List
- Christmas Cards Received/Update information
- Christmas To-Do List
- Gift Wish List
- Gifts Received & Thank-You Log
- Family New Year’s Resolutions
- Christmas Entertaining And Parties
- Christmas Dinner Party Planner
- Christmas Luncheon Planner
- Christmas Party Guest List
- Christmas Party RSVP List
- Party Music PlayList
- Party Planner
- Party Budget Planner
- Children’s Party Planner
- Children’s Party Schedule
- Children’s Party Budget Planner
- Caterer Contact List
Bonus: Just Added for Thanksgiving
We’ve just added two more worksheets:
- Gratitude List
- Grocery Worksheet