While everyone is spreading holiday cheer, you may be wondering how you’re going to cope with your first holiday season post-divorce. We work with many clients who experience the holidays shortly after their divorce is final. We understand that everything may look and feel different now and celebrating may be the last thing on your mind. Though it may seem nearly impossible, there are ways to manage a divorce during the holidays, so that you can still celebrate with family and friends.

We’ve put together some tips on how you can make your holidays a little brighter.

1. Give Yourself Grace

First and foremost, it’s important to give yourself grace. If you’re grieving your divorce, allow yourself to feel and honor those emotions; however, don’t let grief overshadow the bits of joy all around you. Find something to be grateful for this holiday season.

2. Remember Your Children

If you have children, do your best to create a great experience for them. Establish new traditions! Let your children know that the holidays will be celebrated in a new way, and let them help create new rituals. Go to a nearby pottery studio and create your own ornaments. Build a gingerbread house. Make homemade hot cocoa and s’ mores around a campfire. Get creative!

3. Don’t Celebrate Alone 

Not going to have the kids this year for all or part of the holidays? This can be exceptionally difficult to accept. Don’t isolate yourself. Plan something fun and stress-free with the people you love most. Take time and plan an activity for yourself that you’ll enjoy. Read that book you’ve been putting off reading. Go see a movie or indulge in your favorite meal at your favorite restaurant.

4. Find Your Peace 

Finally, make peace with the fact that, while this holiday season may not be completely ideal, there is still so much to be thankful for.