Tips on How to Cope with Christmas When Someone you Love Has Died

How to cope with Christmas?  Even the thought of it can be a nightmare when a loved one has died, and especially a partner, child or other person you were close to.

  • Manage Your Expectations

Traditionally Christmas (and other holidays too) are times when people look forward to the comforting nature of a tradition, one that has been around for many years. But when a death happens, it disrupts this tradition – the sailing boat within which everyone was sailing loses a member, and the whole boat therefore becomes unbalanced, until those still in the boat find a new way of balancing it.

While this is happening, a transition is taking place. As you are going through a transition when Christmas is happening, then you may both want things to be just the same (which they can never be) and different (which you may find equally as difficult) – this is normal.

 Thing is, expectations lead you to imagine that this is going to be the worst day you can imagine. The mind can go into overdrive as it fearfully creates pictures of what it will be like without your loved one. It thinks it knows just what will happen, and how you will feel, and it takes you off on a journey of pain and suffering, as you imagine the scenario that you think will happen.

Or maybe you’re feeling guilty – maybe you have regrets (which is normal) or maybe you are playing different ‘what if’ scenarios in your head e.g. What if I had taken a different road she would still be alive.

The trouble with expectations is you set yourself up to experience exactly what you are expecting. If you have already decided that it will be a difficult time (and that it ‘should’ be) then guess what? You are more likely to experience it as difficult. Feeling bad does not benefit anyone, least of all you. So when you notice you have the words ‘ought’ and ‘should’ in your vocabulary, change them to ‘could’ or ‘would like to’. At the very least this gives you an option. The truth is, you don’t know what it will be like.

No-one can possibly know in advance what they are going to be feeling in a certain moment, let alone a few days or weeks hence. The mind thinks it knows, but that is it just doing overtime in the fear-based fantasy department of your brain.

The actual truth is the day might be awful. It might be difficult. It might be okay. It might even be enjoyable. It might be a mixture of all these things.

If you are even having a hint of ‘it should be bad’ or ‘if I enjoy myself then I am betraying X’ or ‘out of respect for X I mustn’t have too good a time’, then this is also a time to be scrupulously honest with yourself. When you die, would you want those left behind to have a bad time out of respect for you? Would you want them to not enjoy themselves? You’d want them to be as happy as they can be.

Just because others tell you they had an awful day does not mean that you will, or that you ought to.

It is different for every person, and your ONLY job is to have it be the way YOU want. Be open to it being what it is. You may have a whole rollercoaster of emotions all in the one day and that’s ok.

Be open to it being good, awful, great, sad, poignant, cheerful – be open to the fact you could enjoy yourself at the same time as being sad that your loved one is not there. It IS possible. You can be happy and sad at the same time.

  • Do things differently  – Dare to do your Christmas differently.

Whether you like it or not, it is already going to be different, simply because your loved one is no longer here.   So maximize on this, welcome the fact that it is already different. You can keep some of the traditions and let go of others. Invent new ones. Make big changes like going away with friends instead of going to family; or make small changes like having your Christmas meal at a different time, or eating a goose or a succulent piece of beef instead of a turkey. Even altering the routine of when presents are opened, or dressing differently, will help you cope better with what is already different.

  • Welcome your loved one in

On your first Christmas after passing of your loved one you might invite an old friend of yours to come and stay with you. On the day itself you may treat it as another day, albeit special as you both will have some presents to open. It is crucial, though, to actively welcome the loved one in to be with you. It isn’t like you try to have them be there, as if they were in a body, but rather that you speak often about him/her, in an easy manner sharing happy memories.  It can be sad, poignant and beautiful all at the same time. If you are sharing your day with other members of the family, set up a time to specifically welcome your loved one by sharing memories and celebrating their life. Let family members know in advance you will be doing this. Invite them to bring their memories and share them.

This is important because by doing this you create a space for your loved one, but you are also creating space for everyone else there too. Otherwise it can all too easily become a day that is dominated by the one thing everyone is not speaking of – the person who has died, and there have been many instances where, because of not wanting to mention that person, they effectively infiltrate and dampen the atmosphere, simply because everyone is afraid they will feel bad because they are not there.

You want your Christmas Day to be about the people who are there with you in the room, as well as those who aren’t. To do this, you need to make a conscious space for those who are no longer in their physical bodies.

  • Take care of yourself

This might be thought of as sacrilegious at a time which is mostly associated with giving to others. But your giving will only be true giving if you are willing to give to yourself too. Otherwise it is easy for it to be tainted with resentment, duty, and other victim-like thoughts such as ‘no-one understands what it’s like for me without X’.

In the run-up to Christmas this may take the form of not shopping at all other than online; of going to different shops than usual; of not sending Christmas cards in the usual way (or not at all)

If you decide you do want to shop in the actual shops do it differently.

On the day itself, be as kind to yourself as you can be. That means taking time out to just nourish you – that could be in the form of a nap on your bed in the middle of the day; saying no to the traditional walk if you really feel like you’d rather be alone; writing a letter in your journal to your loved one; reaching out to a friend; having a special phone call; being with any children more than with adults.

Communicate what you are going to do in a clear, firm and loving way. Be willing to take care of yourself even if others don’t like it. If you don’t give to yourself first, you will not be able to give freely to others.

  • Accept and reach out for help

This is where ‘putting on a brave face and pretending’ have to go out the window. Of course you don’t want to be a dampener on the day for others. That’s natural. But you don’t do that by pretending that you are okay and don’t need support  from anyone else.

Bearing in mind that the only thing you probably want is your loved one back in the room with you, there are still things that others can give to you that will help you be present and more fully able to enjoy the day. When you don’t let others know your heart is breaking, or you need someone to do something practical for you, how are they ever going to know what is going on? People are not mind-readers. They cannot necessarily tell that underneath that cheerful façade you are screaming or sobbing inside.

So reach out – be brave – tell someone how you really feel in the moment. Let it out. Allow yourself to be fully held in someone else’s arms. Sob your heart out. Feel numb. Be whatever emotion is currently visiting for you, and you will at the very least have the benefit of knowing you are loving yourself by being authentic.

And when people offer help to you, accept it. Even if that is difficult, even if it’s not your style, again, do things differently and say yes.

Today is the first day of the rest of your life

Hi All
I start this week’s message with a beautiful Read from Jalaluddin Rumi – a Sufi Mystic poet from the 13th Century. Some nuances got lost in translation – reference to God or Lord could also be interpreted as The Great Spirit, Energy, Greater Power, Consciousness……..

Subject: Soul

Soul does not like or dislike – soul does not react – soul is a center of peace in us.  It is the peace that is felt by getting rid of all the worldly matters of life.  Even though peace is there for us all the time, it is not seen or felt by 99% of people because we engage ourselves too much in this materialistic world. Meditation, prayers, kindness and love will bring us to this peace which is our inheritance.

Life is a short passage of our journey towards eternity. It is a gift that is given to us by God.  Compassion and kindness towards the human race and peace and love for humanity is the greatest grace and gift of our Lord to us and is our clear way to eternity.
Love all – as our Lord loves all and He cannot have a seat in a heart that is not full of love for He is love. Be joyful and you will become joy.  Even though you feel you are not happy, think about things that make you happy and be happy – happiness is our right.
God is happiness – we have to be happy to be one with God who is kind – kindness is God.  Show kindness to humans, to animals, kindness to trees and kindness to whatever exists in this world – as it is all creation of the Lord, we have to be kind to be one with God.  Compassion is God – compassion for all living and non-living things in life, compassion and action to help those in need.  Faith in action is love – joy, happiness, kindness, laughter, compassion – that is faith in action.

Rumi said beautifully.
“Give up your drop and become part of the ocean”.
When you give up your ego self and become one with the world around you, you will find life to be a beautiful experience, a very happy experience.

Regarding suffering, Rumi powerfully said, “I lost everything I had, but in the process I found myself, when I found myself, I found God when I found God, I did not need anything else – even in the loosing of everything there was something deeper I gained.”

As you ponder on this I invite you to think of today as your first step to the rest of your life. Some of you joined me last year on this ‘Goal Setting and Goal Getting’ journey – others are new to it. This week’s step is the most important step because it helps you to define what is really important to you and your loved ones and it helps you to take appropriate steps so that you can live a life of ‘no regrets’

Get yourself a nice binder, pages, dividers and a 4 color Bic pen.

Label the first Divider – 6 months to live

If you were told you only had 6 months to live what are the most important things to be, see, have, do etc

For example:

I would take the family on a nice holiday

I would spend more time with my family

I would hug more and tell my family I love them as often as I can

I would forgive …….

I would arrange financial security for my family

I would update my will / living will

I would get in touch with my inner spirituality etc

I would have an up-to-date all encompassing binder with all my information in one place – for example Financial information, Insurance, Funeral arrangements, business secession plan, bill payment information, names and phone numbers of people to contact – professional and family, location of current will, and anything else you can think of.

Add to this list over a few days as new ideas come up. Maybe discuss it with your spouse or a close friend to get feedback.

Once you have a concrete list start acting on it right away. Some things you can do right away, others may take a bit of work, but do it anyway – even a few steps in the right direction is progress.



Kale Chips

Organic Kale
Olive oil
Salt / Pepper
Optional – crushed garlic for garlic flavored chips

Preheat oven to 250 degrees

Wash and pat dry each leaf. Devein each leaf i.e cut out the main vein and other thicker ones. Tear the leaf into smaller pieces.

Toss the kale pieces in olive oil, salt and pepper. ( if garlic flavored mix the garlic into the olive oil before tossing)  Scatter the kale pieces on baking trays so that the pieces are not touching each other. Bake 10-15 mins, flip them and bake another 10-15 mins. Once they are crisp they are ready to enjoy.


Happy New Year

It’s time to wrap up the old and release what no longer serves us, and to create exactly what fulfills us!

Right now we are in Mercury retrograde (December 19 to January 8). During this Mercury retrograde, we are being challenged to look at what serves us and release the rest. Mercury is how we connect with our world and with others.  It is time to review what is important for us right now; what is working, what is not.

Use this time to complete projects or communications that haven’t been finished.  It’s also time for a major clean out.  The old things or Patterns that aren’t working need to be cleaned out so that the new things coming in have place to land and grow. This is also a good time to de-clutter your home and work environment.

That leads us to Goal Setting versus New Year’s Resolutions. Most people find that they fall off the bandwagon with New Year’s Resolutions, mainly because all the factors that affect the outcome are not addressed.

After Mercury Retrograde I shall give you access to my signature “Goal Setting’ program, where I shall guide you through a series of steps to define your Goals in all areas of your life. The feedback I have had from those of you who did it last year is phenomenal.

I wish you and yours a Very Happy New Year. I wish that you be blessed with the best of health, happiness, peace, love and prosperity. May all your wishes be fulfilled.


Mumtaz Mitha


Detox Drink

Detoxifies your liver and boosts your immune system

Every morning drink a mug of hot water with fresh squeezed juice from an organic lime, small pinch organic turmeric, small pinch Himalaya Salt and ¼ teaspoon Organic or Manukah Honey.

Lime juice has a hint of bitter which makes it more effective but you can substitute organic lemon if you like. To get more juice you can soak the lime in hot water for few minutes and soften it by rolling it between your hands before cutting and squeezing.

Again, if you have health issues or are on any medications or supplements please check with your doctor or pharmacist before including this in your daily routine.

Traditional Chai Tea

Spice Blend

8 cardamom pods ( green or white)

1-2 cinnamon stick pieces (depending on how strong a flavour you want)

1 level teaspoon ginger powder or more

Few black peppercorns – maximum 1 level teaspoon

1 teaspoon or more fennel seeds

1 star anise

1 pinch nutmeg

You can do a coarse grind the old fashioned way (pestle and mortar) or coffee grinder.

Milder version – You can cut down on the cinnamon and ginger powder and cut out black peppercorns and star anise.


Simmer three cups water with above blend and 3 teabags for about ten minutes then add 1 ½ cups of milk/almond milk and simmer for another 5 minutes. (After adding milk stir frequently) Pour and sweeten with maple syrup or Organic honey if desired and enjoy.

I usually put half the spice mixture in to simmer and then go with the aroma as to whether I want it spicier.

You could, if you like, do a bigger spice batch and store in a glass jar in your fridge.

Taz Breakfast tea


2 pods green cardamom

2 slices fresh Organic Turmeric

3-4 slices fresh Organic Ginger

½ teaspoon fennel seeds

Simmer for ten minutes, add choice of milk

Enjoy (remember to chew up at least one slice of ginger and turmeric and a few seeds)

Forgiveness (Part 2)


I know that some of you have had some terrific times this year, others not-so-terrific, and others a mix. However there is always something to be grateful for.  I invite you to find gratitude in your heart as we celebrate the holidays.

Happy Holidays from my heart to yours. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Solstice, Kwanzaa, Kushali or simply the changing of the year, this is a season of love and connection.



Forgiveness (Part 2)

You will know that forgiveness has begun when you recall those who hurt you and feel the power to wish them well.

-Lewis B Smedes

Forgiveness is essential in changing our lives. The first step of Forgiveness is awareness and acknowledgment of the negative belief in your subconscious mind.  The next step is to consciously forgive yourself and others by recognizing that your own unconscious beliefs are attracting into your life all people, events and circumstances to help you heal. This is a big step in the process of letting go and forgiving.

Practice forgiveness first and foremost. Rather than perceiving wrong doings against us – which makes them real to us –  and then forgiving them, why not simply forgive as if nothing had ever actually occurred?  Our perception of a situation is tainted by our own reality and it is often a just a brief snapshot of the whole movie.  ( Use the Ana Pana Meditation from last week). Forgiving in this way reminds us that none of us ever really knows the whole story. It teaches us true humility and helps to keep us from taking on new subconscious programs and trapped emotions.

Forgiveness is the act of letting go. It is the most powerful things we can do to change our lives. When we let go of what does not serve us we attract into our lives the people, things, and circumstances that share and enhance our inherent joy.

You may, if you like, give your problem over to a higher power.


Ho’oponopono is a Hawaiian forgiveness prayer I leant from Serge Kahili King during my Huna training many years ago.

I’m sorry.

Please forgive me.

Thank you.

I love you.

Repeat the words as you walk, as you drive, as you go about your daily tasks. Use them when your mind regurgitates old negative scenarios. You will feel a sense of comfort.


Golden Milk variation for cold / flu:

1/4 teaspoon Ajwain Seeds (available at local East Indian Store or Superstore)

!/4 teaspoon Organic Ginger powder

1/2 teaspoon Organic Turmeric powder

1/2 teaspoonOrganic butter/ghee or coconut oil

1/2 teaspoon Organic honey or Manukah Honey

5 Strands Saffron

Pinch black pepper

2 cups milk/almond milk/ coconut milk


On low heat lightly cook the top three ingredients till aromatic.

Add milk, pinch of black pepper and saffron and allow to simmer at low heat for 10 minutes stirring to prevent sticking at the bottom.

When ready, add honey and enjoy.

Forgiveness (part one)


Part 1
This follows up on the article on ‘Karma’ from last week

Inner Peace can be reached only when we practice forgiveness. Forgiveness is letting go of the past, and is therefore the means for correcting our misconceptions.”
~ Gerald (Jerry) G. Jampolsky, Love Is Letting Go of Fear

Forgiveness is the literal act of “letting go or releasing.”  What we hold on to, in our conscious and in our subconscious mind,   creates and attracts people and circumstances to us that create our reality.
For example, you may have a belief running in your subconscious that believes that you not safe. It may be from an early childhood trauma, or a genetic belief passed down from a parent, grandparent, or even brought with us from another place or time.   It is essential for us to communicate with our subconscious mind to find out what beliefs may be there – creating our lives for us against our conscious choice and desires.
Do you have old anger and resentment that you have not properly forgiven and released?  Is it showing up in your current relationships?  Holding onto anger literally blocks you from letting Love and happiness into your life experience. Anytime you refuse to forgive and hold onto anger you block yourselves from letting love into your heart.  The only person that is affected is you.
When you hold on to fear, anger, sadness, or worry subconsciously, your subconscious mind continually working overtime to keep you safe. This means that you have greater difficulty creating your ideal life and you will feel an underlying sense of unhappiness regardless of what you do.
The subconscious mind is infinitely more powerful than your conscious mind. Your conscious mind is the seat of your willpower and logic. When the subconscious mind is projecting beliefs of fear, doubt, anger, frustration, and sadness, it is literally inviting the Universe to engage you in scenarios that which will bring up these emotions as a means for you to resolve them.

A Clearing Meditation to help you
Ana Pana Breath Mindfulness
Your breath is connected to your emotions.  By passively observing your breathing you allow yourself to clear emotions. This meditation can be done while seated or while engaged in activities – walking, driving etc
What is my Breathing doing?
–    Is it fast or slow
–    Is it deep or shallow
–    Is it coming in through my right nostril, left one, both, more through one than the other
–    How does it feel as I breathe in?
–    How does it feel as I breathe out?
If your mind wanders bring it back to your breathing
Repeat until your breathing feels peaceful.

Forgiveness Part 2 – Next Week


Golden Milk from a base

1/2 cup organic Turmeric powder
1 cup water (more if needed)
1 tsp ground black pepper (piperine from the black pepper helps absorption of turmeric)
Pinch of organic ginger powder (optional)
¼ cup Organic coconut oil or ghee (fats enhance absorption of turmeric in the body)

1. At very low heat lightly toast the Turmeric powder (20-30 seconds) till aromatic.
2. Add water and cook on low heat gently till it forms a thick paste (6-9 minutes). If it is too thick add water, too thin add more turmeric. Add black pepper (and ginger) and oil/ghee and stir to ensure all ingredients are mixed in.
Cool it down and store in a glass jar.  Refrigerated, it is good for a couple of weeks.
Have ¼ to ½ tsp in warm milk of any kind daily.

Warning: Turmeric has a lot of benefits. However turmeric and ginger are both blood thinners.  If you are on blood thinners you should check with your doctor or pharmacist before taking it.  Also if you have to undergo dental work or surgery you may have to cut it out for a few days prior.

Mumtaz Mitha is a Master Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist and a Hypnosis Teacher.  She has been in private practice for over 37 years and can be reached at

Copyright © 2016 Alpha Awareness Centre, All rights reserved.

My Take on Karma (and a recipe)


Where does the word Karma come from? In my language ‘Karam’ means deeds. Karma is your pattern of deeds.Western understanding of karma is “what goes around comes around.” But the reality of karma is more expansive. Your actions throughout your current and past lives become the circumstances of your being now, and in your future lives.

Karma is soul memory, which means it stems from our past lives and current life. Teachings from my elders from many walks of life lead me to believe the course of our current life is mostly predetermined by our past lives.

What we didn’t “make right” in our last life will persistently present itself in this one. I think that all situations are the consequence of lingering past and present karma and that it can always be reversed and resolved.

Karma has no expiration date. It is like the luggage your soul carries on its trip from life-to-life, which means you’re stuck with it until you open it up and sort through its old contents. Without even knowing it, you may be experiencing karma that originated several lifetimes ago. But when you analyse your karmic load, you can confront your outstanding karma and lighten your energetic load.

I believe that there are no coincidences.  Everyone is in your life for a reason. While you have the free will to walk away from or remain with a certain person, karma ultimately overpowers free will.

This means that the course of karmic relationships will play out as planned no matter what you do.
Acknowledge the role of each person in your life:
Why are they in your life?
What have they come to teach you and vice versa?
What is the karma you are meant to experience with this person?
The sooner you acknowledge the truth of the karma you share with someone (good or bad), the sooner you can settle or clear it.

In past life regressions I have noted that Karma often causes people to reincarnate in role reversal. This means that your parent may have actually been your child in a former life. Souls switch genders, too. Positions shift throughout lifetimes based on karmic need – whatever dynamic is needed to repair or heal karma will be manifested through changing roles in our cycle of lives on earth. The people you know now may have had a very different impact on your previous lives!

One of the most fascinating facts about karma is that it repeats to produce new results through enlightenment. The reason that karma repeats itself is not to cause you pain; it is to teach you to take different actions for different results. For example, if you’re attracting the same type of partners into your life over and over again, it’s time to stop and inspect your choices: Why do similar people keep coming in? What should you be doing differently?….. Ponder on this for a couple of minutes.

This calls for honest introspection and evaluation of your own faults and flaws. Don’t be afraid to look within. Identify what must be changed inside of you so as to change what’s outside of you. Then, you can modify your behaviour to end karmic patterns and make progress.
Past-life karma is resoundingly present in your current life whether you are aware of it or not. Muster up the courage to do karmic introspection and take corrective action. This act alone will change your destiny for lifetimes to come.


Baked Oatmeal

Soak 2 cups Organic Steel Cut Oats in 2 Cups liquid (water, milk, almond milk……) Stir in a tablespoon of buckwheat flour and soak overnight refrigerated

Next day add 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1 egg (optional) , 2 tablespoons of melted Organic coconut oil, 1/4 tsp cinnamon and stir.

Optional – add 1-2 tablespoons freshly ground organic flax seeds and/or unsweetened shredded coconut and /or 1/2 – 1 cup chopped nuts

Add 1-2 chopped apples and a cup or 2 of organic frozen berries.

Stir and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 45 mins till nicely set. Cut into portions and freeze for a quick breakfast (can add liquid, nut or seed butter, hemp hearts if you like or enjoy it dry if you like)


Mumtaz Mitha

About Us

Established in 1979, Alpha Awareness Centre’s goal is to help people improve their life through the use of hypnotherapy. We use a highly personalized, discreet, compassionate, and understanding approach that is solution orientated.

Mumtaz Mitha is a Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist. She has been in private practice for over 30 years and has also trained many hypnotherapists. She is a founding member of the Canadian Hypnotherapy Association and has appeared as a guest speaker on VTV and BCTV.

For a 1/2 hour complimentary consultation please call:
(604) 273-1567


(604) 273-1567