December is a painful time for many people who are missing a loved one. Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, New Year’s or other festivities, the holidays can stress you emotionally, mentally and physically. Alex Zima, grief counselor for HopeHealth, says your heart may be heavy whether this is the first season without your loved one or you have been grieving longer.
The holiday season can be hard in times of grief. But for many people, noting the good things in life can be an important way to heal while honoring a loved one’s memory. “Gratitude is a very powerful tool to nurture yourself, and Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to practice using that tool,” says Alex Zima, a grief counselor with HopeHealth. Practicing gratitude actively grows your awareness of things that can benefit and support you. It’s even scientifically proven to help you cope with grief.