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Managing the Holidays Through Change and Transitions

While change is inevitable, it can be particularly challenging during the holidays, where the focus is often on traditions. Whether that change comes from a move, a loss of loved one, a separation, or an addition to the family, it can help to have open discussions on how everyone would like to handle the adjustment during celebrations and vacations. The following ideas may help you get started:


  • Consider saving one or two traditions, as this can provide comfort and familiarity to children and adults alike.

  • Discuss updating a tradition. For instance, if you have always gone to see the Nutcracker but can’t make that happen this year, choose a different show or performance.

  • Use Facetime or Zoom to connect with loved ones who can’t be physically present.

  • Create a tradition to recognize loved ones no longer with us. For example, have folks share a memory at the holidays of that family member or friend.

  • Create a tradition that involves recognizing the positive. As humans, we are wired to focus on what’s wrong or different rather than our blessings.

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