With its chilly temperatures and limited hours of daylight, winter is a gloomy time for many. But if you’ve recently lost a loved one, the winter season can be an especially difficult time for you.
Unfortunately, grief does not care what season you are currently experiencing when it makes its appearance. Many people who are experiencing grief during winter will have an extra challenge to overcome.
Here is some advice on how to navigate your grief during the winter months.
Avoid Isolating Yourself
It can be very easy to slip into a life of isolation during the cold winter months – and even more so when you are grieving.
Although short periods of time on your own are okay, try to engage with others on a regular basis. If you don’t feel like going out, invite a friend or family member over to enjoy a cup of coffee or a quiet movie night.
Register for an Activity You Enjoy
Winter is a great time to register for a class that you’ve been wanting to take or to practice a hobby that you haven’t had time to do. As opposed to making plans with friends that are easy to cancel, paying for an activity upfront creates an incentive to actually attend the activity.
Many people experiencing grief feel guilty when they spend time enjoying themselves. But there’s no need to! Spending a couple of hours each week completing something that takes your mind off of your grief will only help you in the end.
Begin a Gratitude Journal
Yes, writing down what you are thankful for may seem difficult and even silly at the start.
You may wonder how you can be thankful for anything at a time where you feel such pain. But that’s why it’s especially important to spend some time writing in a gratitude journal each day.
Doing so provides an opportunity to document people, items, or experiences in your life that you appreciate – and can shift your mindset from the gloomy winter months.
Take comfort in knowing that winter is only one of four seasons here in Ontario, Canada and that spring is only a few short months away. The season’s extended daylight, bright sunlight and its promise of a fresh start can do wonders to help you through your difficult grieving period.