For those who lost a loved one, you know that the holiday season can be particularly difficult. While each of us have our own experiences, are in different stages of grief, and grieve differently, there are some ways that may help ease the sting of grief during an especially emotionally potent time of the year.


Keep the traditions you had. Continue going to the family get togethers and connecting with those you love. Your loved one would probably want you to continue making new memories and enjoying the company of others. If you had a special tradition you did with your loved one, you can try to keep it in honor of them. Sometimes it can be lonesome engaging in a tradition that you did with your significant other. You can bring a family or friend along and tell them stories of that tradition. For example, if you and your loved one who passed always had breakfast at Cafe X the day after Christmas, invite a dear friend to go to breakfast with you at Cafe X and tell them about memories you have being with your loved one there.

Memories and Mementos

In many cultures, they remember their passed family with alters, displays, offerings, and more. Depending on what you feel comfortable with, you can set up a display of favorite pictures, eat their favorite food, and play their favorite song.

When someone we care about passes, it can be extremely difficult discarding their belongings. It could be helpful to create a “memory box” where you keep and put away some of their belongings. Common things to save are a favorite shirt or even a piece of fabric from their favorite piece of clothing, bottle of their cologne or perfume, letters, and anything you would like.

Unspoken Words

Many who grieve feel like there were things left unspoken, whether you weren’t able to say goodbye, are angry or upset about something, didn’t apologize, or just wanted to say, “I love you” one more time. One can still express these unspoken words. Some write a letter and burn or bury it at a special time and place, set the note free in the ocean or river, or send the message off with a balloon. You can speak into a flower and leave it at their grave or plant it. Write and recite a poem at their resting place or place of significance.

Spiritual Connection

Spirituality and religion can also be another resource for coping with grief. If you are a religious or spiritual person, connect with your spiritual leaders and higher power. Prayer, meditation, pondering, and reading of inspiring books can also help in finding solace during this difficult time.


Though at times it may feel that you are alone, there are many others suffering as well. You can connect with others through bereavement groups locally in person, online, or on phone. Seeking out a therapist could be helpful, along with connecting with family, friends, and a spiritual community.