With festivities and joy for many, this time of the year can bring up many hard emotions for a lot of us. Although everyone deserves to experience love and joy, it can be important to actively show love and support for those who may get a rush of emotions during this time.
For anyone who has experienced loss, grief, heartache or pain – we’ve got your back.
Let’s go over a couple of ways to show love and support during the festivities and Christmas holidays.
1. Offer support in practical ways
Instead of offering support or letting someone know you are there for them, offer practical help. For example, I’m down at the shops getting a coffee, can I bring you one?
This can make it easier for someone going through a hard time to accept the help, rather than feel like a burden asking for it.
2. Less talking, more listening
Simply asking how someone is feeling can be powerful in itself. When the response is given, listen to them, rather than trying to interject with advice.
Allow them to express their feelings without fear or judgement. It can also be helpful to avoid making statements starting with ‘you should’ or ‘you will’, allow the person to have your support without being told what to do or what to feel.
3. Let them know you are there for them
Make sure they know that you are there for them. Reaching out with a simple text message can be a great and simple way to show love and support.
4. Make time for them
If it’s possible, make time to catch up with them in person, do something fun to get into the holiday spirit. If you aren’t able to see them face to face, organise a video call! Staying connected in a genuine way is a great way to show support.
5. Write them a gratitude card
Ditch the Christmas gift. Write a special and meaningful card, letting them know how much they mean to you, and what you are grateful for in them.
6. Let them know you love them
Words of affirmation are powerful! When was the last time you told someone you love? Although sometimes action speaks louder, words can also be extremely meaningful, and necessary for some to really feel loved and reminded.
7. Plan something fun for the new year with them
Plant a seed of hope for something fun to look forward to in the new year.
8. Look out for signs of depression/need of emergency help
Looking out for things such as constant bitterness, subduing from socialising constantly, speaking about feeling hopeless all the time, speaking of suicide or death, anger and constant lack of joy for day to day life.
Although there are other symptoms, make sure to pay attention to any drastic changes to someone’s personality or lifestyle. Sometimes it can be better to lean on the side of caution.
If any unusual behaviours are noticed, please provide the following details to your loved one, in a supportive way. If anything is received negatively and an emergency is detected, call 000.
Lifeline: 13 11 14 (Australia Wide)
Mental Health Emergency Response Line: 1300 555 788 (Western Australia)
Beyond Blue: 1300 22 4636 (Australia Wide)
We hope this blog has been helpful in finding gentle ways to support a loved one experiencing tough emotions this time of the year. If you require any non-urgent assistance or have a non-urgent query over the Christmas holidays, please email us.