Surviving the Holidays

“Do not see anything as coincidence. Spirits are trying to guide us all the time by giving us signs throughout the day. Pay attention to them, and trust them. –Pages 198-199 of Expect the Unexpected: Bringing Peace, Healing, and Hope from the Other Side

The winter holidays are a very festive time for many, but they also can be a depressing and lonely time for those who have lost loved ones. I know this firsthand because of the death of my mother, but also because the holiday season is always my busiest each year for readings; it can trigger a lot of sadness in people’s lives. 

While our loved ones on the other side do not like us to be sad, they are happy to know that we are thinking of them when we pull out photo albums, listen to their favorite music, or set a chair for them at the dinner table. Through our grief, we are inviting them into our lives, which from their perspective is a celebration. And spirits love to be part of our celebrations.

Here are some steps you can take to connect with your lost loved ones, feel their presence, and honor them, which can help lessen the weight of your grief during this season and beyond.

1.) Be of service. We are here in this life to share our talents in ways that will benefit others, especially during the holidays when we are feeling more sensitive and vulnerable. We can honor our loved ones by giving of ourselves in some way. Maybe someone you loved who has died worked for a certain charity or was a resident of a nursing home. You can honor that person by purchasing gifts for that charity or by visiting the elderly in that home. Use your talents in a way that will positively affect someone in need and, at the same time, honor your loved one.

2.) Know that your loved ones who have died are not grieving or depressed or sad.They are in a wonderful place, and they want us to know that. That is why they constantly try to reassure us by providing us with validations, which tend to go into overdrive during this season. But we have to be open to hearing them and not be consumed by the material side of the holidays. The holidays should be about love and connecting with family and friends. Do not let anything that is not of your highest good get in the way.

3.) Pulling out an item that belonged to love one – maybe an ornament or a watch – will remind us of their presence in a positive way and will lighten the grief. If you do not have access to something tangible, think of the good times you had with them to spark a feeling of love. It’s all about opening your heart and feeling connected to them. Calm yourself down, be present, and have perspective of what the holidays are supposed to be about.

4.) Everything should be done in moderation during the holidays; too much of something can cause depression. We tend to indulge more than usual during this season. Extra alcohol or sugar or other food can mess with the nervous system and affect your mood and vibration. They can make you more agitated or depressed. Be good to your body. Allow yourself to have some goodies, but know your limit. Don’t let grief lead you to your vices. Keep your body in balance, which will help you deal with the loss of a loved one in a more positive way.

5.) Take in some Christmas lights. Too often we drive right past them without giving them a thought. Lights can inspire us. They can lift our spirits. The people who put up lights on houses or buildings do so for our benefit, so take advantage of them. Soak them in visually while thinking of your loved surrounded by a warm light on the other side. It’s a simple thing, but it can go a long way toward bringing some happiness into your life during a difficult time.

Remember, even though we cannot hear our lost loved ones the way that we used to, they can hear us – something that should be very comforting at this time of year. Have a conversation with them – at home, while driving, while taking a walk. And it doesn’t have to be verbal. They can pick up our thoughts telepathically, so we can say what we want to say to them in the privacy of our minds. See if it positively affects your mood during the holidays. When you see that it does, try to do it year-round, not just one month out of the year. By making it a habit throughout the year, you will continually build your relationship with them as if they are still here…because they are. They are just on the other side in heaven.

Bill Philipps is a world-renowned psychic medium and the author of the Amazon #1 bestselling book “Expect the Unexpected: Bringing Peace, Healing, and Hope from the Other Side.” Visit him at