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Enjoy the Holidays Alone
Many of us find ourselves alone during the holidays. Whether it's due to a recent breakup or high airfare costs, some of us simply need to prepare for solitary celebrations. Though you might be alone for the holidays, a few good practices can help you avoid the pitfalls of loneliness, boredom, and depression. Follow these simple tips for jollier holidays alone.
1.) Don't fall for the commercial hype.
Being alone during the holidays isn't wrong or unnatural! Unfortunately, portrayals of stereotypical "happy family" get-togethers leave many of us feeling as though we're alone in our isolation. These unrealistic portrayals of a magical holiday season set us up for disappointment. They may also trigger deep-seated issues like low self-esteem, addiction, depression, and more.
Unfortunately, it's nearly impossible to avoid all of the commercialization surrounding the holidays. If you find yourself feeling lonelier after watching holiday films or listening to Christmas carols, avoid these things by recording your favorite TV programs and queuing up radio stations that stick to non-festive tunes. By freeing yourself from these unrealistic depictions of the holiday season, you can more easily embrace your own form of wintry bliss.
2.) Treat yourself to something nice.
Just because you're alone for the holidays doesn't mean you have to live without fun and indulgences. Use the season to treat yourself to a few things that you truly enjoy. Dress up and visit a nice restaurant alone or with a friend. Purchase that item you've been coveting for months. Have the store wrap it for you if you'd like! Spend an evening at the theater or an afternoon visiting a museum or park. In short, treat yourself to the gifts you'd want others to give to you. Enjoy the holidays on your own terms. You deserve it.
3.) Connect with others.
Though you might not have the opportunity to be with your family for the holidays, you can make plans with others throughout the winter months. Plan a casual "secret Santa" lunch with some friendly coworkers. Call up a few of your best friends to go shopping, see a movie, or bake Christmas cookies. If you're a member of a club or team, spend some time hanging out with fellow members.
If you have family members who you can't visit over the holidays, find other ways to stay in touch. Set up Skype and video-call your siblings, children, or grandchildren. Write a few heartfelt cards to your family and friends. Instead of withdrawing, reach out to those you know and love. You'll soon realize that you're never truly alone.
4.) Do something charitable.
Volunteering is an incredible way to boost your spirits while aiding the greater good. If you already participate in charitable efforts, increase your participation during the holiday season. If you're new to charity work, consider volunteering at a local soup kitchen. Serving less fortunate individuals will surely leave you counting your blessings.
To spread more holiday cheer, consider ringing a bell for the Salvation Army. You can make this festive charity job fun by singing carols and engaging with donors. The funds you raise will stay within your local community. Other seasonal volunteer opportunities include donating warm jackets to the poor and purchasing holiday gifts for children in need. You can pour your efforts into any cause that you believe in.
Whether or not you're spending the holidays alone, charitable work is a wonderful way to make your celebrations more meaningful.
5.) Let your creativity flow.
One of the surest ways to banish boredom and loneliness is by delving into an enjoyable project. To pass the time this holiday season, tap into your inner creativity. Even if you've never painted, buy a brush and start experimenting! If you've always wanted to play the guitar, find a used instrument and look up a tutorial online. If you enjoy spending time in the kitchen, try out a few interesting new recipes. Sew or knit if you'd like. Don't let yourself get stressed out, though! Scribbling in a coloring book or making a collage can be stress-free indulgences, too. Whatever your field of choice may be, the holidays are a great time to relax, explore, and create.
Though you may wish that you were with loved ones during the holiday season, sometimes this simply isn't possible. Being alone, however, shouldn't doom you to a gloomy winter. By treating yourself well, connecting with others, and remaining open to new activities and experiences, you can make the holidays jolly on your own terms.
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