New Year, New Moments: Cultivating Joy After Grief

joy after grief

Much has been written about the opportunity for change when the calendar turns to a new year. For many, this may include going on a diet, losing weight, or spending more time with friends and family. As a person who has experienced loss, this is also an opportunity to move forward and begin finding joy after grief.

Healing after grief is a process that can encompass a range of feelings, including happiness, joy, and hope. In 2018, your friends at Miller Funeral and Cremation Services want to encourage you to reach out and find reasons to smile. Here are a few suggestions to help you begin the path to a wonderfully healing new year.

8 Ways to Create Joy After Grief

  1. Get in touch with what you love. For most of us, it can be easy to put aside hobbies, activities, and aspirations when life demands other things. Now might just be the time to learn a new language, get back into photography or painting, or try any number of activities that you once loved and cherished.
  2. Throw a party. There’s nothing more joyful than a gathering, and throwing a party doesn’t have to be just about birthdays or holidays. Gather your friends and neighbors and host an event around a certain theme, like wine and cheese, the 1950s, or a sports game. Enlist the help of friends for planning and clean-up.
  3. Reach out to friends who are going through a rough time. This is a suggestion that’s likely been given many times before, but helping others definitely helps ourselves. Sharing time with someone can improve your own ability to be uplifting and positive and to provide encouragement that truly makes someone else feel good.
  4. Tell old jokes, stories, and share memories that make you smile. Memories don’t have to cause sadness. In fact, there are many moments you can appreciate about your departed loved one that can inspire laughter and fond memories which you can share with others. Remembering happy moments also helps others feel joy.
  5. Take a class or join a gym. Staying active gets the endorphins flowing. The same can be true with learning a new skill or activity like rock climbing, fencing, or another exciting new skill or sport!
  6. Do a comedy movie night with friends. Practicing laughter (yes, you can actually practice laughter) can be a great way to lift the spirit. Ask fellow comedy lovers to join you once a month at a comedy club or to go see a new funny flick.
  7. Go somewhere new. Explore new towns, cities, and terrains and experience all the wonders of the world around you. Seeing so many new places can definitely inspire a sense of reverence, gratitude, and zest for life.
  8. Surround yourself with positive people. It’s (almost) impossible not to feel happy when you’re around positive, supportive people. Consider all your supportive friends and family members -- or even neighbors and coworkers -- and take them out for lunch or coffee. Being with them can help increase your own positivity.

Healing After Grief: It’s Bittersweet

It may feel awkward at first to embrace joy after grief, but life is equally full of new beginnings and endings. Reflecting on shared memories and making new wonderful memories is something that everyone deserves.

The team at Miller wishes you much joy this new year. If we can be of assistance in any way, please don’t hesitate to call us.

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