Putting The Ho-Ho-Ho Back In The Holidays After Divorce

By

Putting The Ho-Ho-Ho Back In The Holidays After Divorce
5 ways to move your post-separation holiday season from blue to new!

The holiday season comes with joy and challenges for us all. The traditions, the families, the expectations, the disappointments. If you are facing your first (or second, or … ) holiday season after a separation or divorce, all of these challenges get magnified — and the joy can often seem elusive. Your family unit is no more, the traditions you created just don't work when there's only one adult and your children are likely only going to share a part of the holiday season with you.

My question to you is this: do you want your holiday experience to be depressing, painful and blue or do you want your holiday experience to be ripe with possibility and all that could be new? For those of you who choose the former, perhaps another article would suit you better (and I would challenge you nonetheless to read on!). For those of you who choose the latter, let's look at some authentic ways to reframe this holiday season so you can be thriving rather than merely surviving.

1. Honor the blue. This is not an exercise in positive thinking! In fact my suggestion is to start exactly where you are. To honor the sadness and disappointment and indeed the loss of the traditions and structures you have created and come to love around your family holidays.

Spending time actually being sad and disappointed and mourning what is no longer is a vital part of moving on from what has been. Creating a ritual to mark the passing of that which was can have a powerful impact and clear the way for the creativity of the new to blossom and grow.

Here's one of my favorite ritual ideas: Write a eulogy for holidays of old — in prose or in poem — describe what you will miss, what you appreciated, what gave you great delight and what you won't miss.

2. Distill what's true. Underneath the details of the traditions we create in our lives are the attributes of those traditions that carry the essential meaning or gift of those traditions. Spend some time looking at the different aspects of your holiday traditions and asking yourself the question: what is it about this tradition that makes it so meaningful to me? Is it really the stockings on Christmas morning or is it the wonder and awe in your children's faces as they revel in the mystery of Santa Claus? Is it really the taste of her grandmother's shortbread that she only makes for the holidays or is it the idea of something carried down through the family history?

Continue reading ...

More divorce advice from YourTango:

Article contributed by

Bob Tomes & Jane Warren

Relationship Coach

Jane Warren & Bob Tomes are established relationship coaches and educators assisting people who are looking to create a vibrant life and relationship.

Stay connected with Jane & Bob through their FREE bi-weekly Relationship Newsletter at Vibrant Couples and if you're impacted by divorce connect with them at SpringBoard Divorce.

 

Location: Calgary, AB, Canada
Credentials: Other
Specialties: Couples/Marital Issues, Divorce/Divorce Prevention, Stepfamilies
Other Articles/News by Bob Tomes & Jane Warren:

Are These Myths Getting In Your Way Of A Happy Relationship?

By

How often have you heard it? Relationships are hard work. If you're not prepared to do the hard work you can't have a good relationship. If you want to be in relationship you'll have to learn to compromise. These are all very prevalent beliefs that have become "truths" to so many couples. Well, we don't agree! In fact, we think the ... Read more

7 Sizzling Valentine's Day Ideas To Wow Your Main Squeeze

By

Valentine's Day has become so laden with traditions, expectations, and marketing mania that it's easy to slip into thought patterns like: "I have to …", "To heck with it, I'm NOT going to …", "He'd better do …" and/or "What on earth am I going to do?" All of which create angst and ... Read more

3 Pattern-Busting Tips For More Passionate Love

By

Ah, routine. Repeating those day-to-day patterns can bring us comfort when life gets a little crazy — but it create a dullness or sense of boredom when they're what define our lives and relationship interactions. Just as we settle into work and career routines, we tend to get into patterns with our partners and start "going through the ... Read more

See More

PARTNER POSTS
Latest Expert Videos
Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

Most Popular