Tips to Fight Holiday Loneliness
HOW TO THRIVE WHEN YOU ARE SINGLE FOR THE HOLIDAYS
After a break-up, there is always that first holiday season faced being on your own. Depending on your situation, there might be a feeling of liberation. But for many people, being alone on the holidays can bring out feelings of loneliness, anxiety and even depression. When we think of the holidays, we often think of being surrounded with others. You may have memories of holidays spent with a partner, recalling the joy of gift giving or shopping together.
I know my first holiday season after my divorce was rough. I felt like I was on uneven ground, not sure how to approach a season that had always been defined by being a family unit. Over the years, it got better, and I realized that I got to make the holiday exactly how I wanted it to be. It felt good to be the decision maker.
I made it through that first holiday season on my own and you can too. Here are some broad tips for being single and loving it:
1. Create a new “family” tradition.
Family doesn’t have to be a traditional structure. Family can consist of good friends and people that you love. Spend the holidays with them and don’t wait for the invite, ask. Most people will love to have you.
2. Help others
Nothing is more grounding than helping people in the community. If you have a service, provide it for free to someone that couldn’t normally afford it. Help at a food bank or something that appeals you. You will be surprised at how energized the body and mind feel after being generous with others.
3. Focus on the positive.
Notice your tendencies and when you feel out of alignment with “joy”. You can change your interactions with others by slowing down. You can even change your interactions just by focusing on the good and positive. Do more of the good and positive.
4. Be moderate.
Your enjoyment of the season is just as important as everyone else’s. Make sure you are not overdoing it just to mask the loneliness or depression you feel.
5. Get outside
We tend to spend a lot of time indoors this time of year with shopping and eating. Even if your area of the country is cold, bundle up and get some fresh air. Go for a walk and contemplate the beauty of your surroundings. A guided hike is a great way to meet other people, too. Or really go for the great outdoors and plan a solo trip- there are tons of group travel options where you could meet other people like on a yoga retreat.
Just because you are single, does not mean you have to lonely. There are so many ways to get involved and connect with others during the holidays. And there are so many people in your community that could benefit from your help. Get involved, connect with others and watch how love can grow within you.