Holidays can be very emotionally tough in general and especially if we have lost a loved one during this past year. Grief aka sadness and despair can be normal.
Complicated grief (CG) is caused by the death of someone close to you. CG, sometimes called persistent complex bereavement disorder, is much stronger than normal grief. Many people go through several stages of grieving after losing a loved one. With CG, you may have trouble moving on for months, years, or longer. You may also find yourself avoiding social contact, losing motivation to do daily tasks, or wishing that you had died, too.
If you feel these things after losing a loved one, you may need to see your doctor to talk about treatment for your CG.
After watching my dear friend’s casket be lowered into the ground today, I walked away debating in my mind: is my invisible valentine-type heart filled with many holes of sorrow or has each loss contributed to one original hole so that now I have one gigantic vast void in that heart? Tomorrow starts a new chapter without Jeanine, and I will take a ride up to the lake for breakfast and a walk on the beach. Life goes on.
What are losses like for you?
Happiness is an attitude. It’s a choice we make.
I’ve been working on this myself! I’ve heard that positive attitudes are predictors for success in many areas of our lives. I would be surprised to find someone who is genuinely happy every day simply because we all have troubles that weave themselves in and out of our lives, and we want to remember those troubles are just one piece of our lives. I tell my clients to “fake it ’til you make it” and one day you will wake up and BE happy in spite of “stuff” that’s going on around you. I’m dedicated to this thinking and hope you will JOIN ME!
Social isolation is one of the biggest predictors of depression—especially during the holidays.
People who are lonely or have feelings of disconnectedness often avoid social interactions at holiday time. Unfortunately, withdrawing often exacerbates the feelings of loneliness and symptoms of depression. These individuals may see other people spending time with friends and family and ask themselves, “Why can’t that be me?” or “Why is everyone else so much happier than I am?”
Experts advise a regimen of self-care during the holidays, which includes eating a healthy diet, maintaining a regular sleep pattern, and exercise. In fact, as little as 30-minutes of cardiovascular exercise can provide an immediate mood boost similar to the effects of an antidepressant medications.
One of the best things a person can do, however, is to reach out to others despite how difficult it may seem. “That loneliness should act in a similar way to thirst, motivating you to change your behavior in some way,” says John Cacioppo, Ph.D., director of the Center of Cognitive and Social Neuroscience at the University of Chicago.
And changes in attitudes … thanks Jimmy!
Tonight I’m thinkin’ this describes my mentality lately … a restlessness in my soul that’s of an unknown nature … a fear that sets panic into full throttle … a hopelessness that this is all there is … and then I KNOW I’ve been away from you all for too long! I also KNOW you’ve been there too! Hey tho … I’m looking so much better these days maybe I SHOULD hit that beach in the Keys! Ever been there? I used to live in Florida and few beaches compare to its’ white sand and turquoise waters. I know … I could plan a PROJECT 10 retreat there! Would YOU come? Will you JOIN ME?
Yes, life IS good!
Here I am again and when I arrive … Sometimes I FREEZE in my momentum.
AND when THAT happens, forget everything because discouragement sets in and I have to make appointments with myself to set myself straight! HaHa!