It is Thanksgiving and the holiday season is upon us. Loss is difficult but it’s not everything, don’t let it overshadow all of the good in your life!
I’m not suggesting you turn off your grief. You can’t. Most often, it’s more prominent during the holidays because that’s when you miss having your loved ones with you even more. Don’t try to hide your grief – you are a right to it, you’ve earned it!
But that does not mean you have to drown in it, or make everyone around you miserable.
Try some of these things to remain thankful through the holiday in spite of your grief.
Take the day off from work if possible, give yourself the day.
First, at the start of the day, make a list of what you are grateful for. Put it aside.
Then choose at least three of the following things to do during the day: (among your other activities)
- Tell someone a funny story about your lost loved one, it’s their legacy
- Take time to listen to a child that wants to share with you, play a game with them
- Reach out and help someone do something they would not expect from you
- Cook something or buy flowers and bring them to an elderly person who is lonely
- Take a long walk in nature and really appreciate your surroundings
- Play with a puppy, even if you borrow or visit one – feel the unconditional love
- Watch a really funny movie or sing aloud with some uplifting music
- Give everyone you see or meet that day a hug (if it’s OK with them!)
- Read something upbeat to a child or elderly person
- Volunteer at a center to help those less fortunate than you
- Teach someone a joke or a card trick and let them practice on you.
- Do something creative, appreciating the artistic nature of it
At the end of the day, make another separate list of what you are grateful for. Do not look back at the old list, start over. When done, compare them. Have you more to be thankful for? Do you feel any better?
I think that not only will you feel better, you may have some tools to help lift you when feeling down. But at least you will have spent the day in a more positive way than you might otherwise have. Hopefully you’ll get through the holiday a little easier and end up a little more thankful!
I am thankful for my family, my friends, and all of you!