Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays! Unless you’re watching sappy Christmas movies that make you feel like you’re supposed to be sharing your days with others instead of enjoying a little solitude, but those sappy Christmas movies are depicting a not-so-real reality of how the holidays truly are for a lot of people. It doesn’t take being surrounded by others to have a wonderful holiday season, and we’ve got a list of things you can do if you’re feeling a little lonely.
First of all, “normal” families and holidays do not exist. Somewhere out there Aunt Bernice has spilled eggnog all down the front of her blouse, Uncle Joe almost set the house on fire frying the turkey, Grandma Sue forgot her teeth at the retirement home and can’t eat her holiday dinner, and someone is spending the holiday alone. That’s it. Plain and simple. No two holidays are the same, and no holiday is perfect. Do not get caught up in a whimsical idea that anything has to be a specific way because that is how it is depicted in movies or books. Christmas and the holiday season can be whatever you want it to be and whatever makes you the happiest boy or girl in the world.
With that in mind, go out and make your holiday everything you want it to be by being proactive and picking up the phone. Joann at work talks about her family’s holiday traditions constantly, and they sound like a lot of fun. So, call Joann and ask to tag along. You don’t really think you could be that brazen to invite yourself to someone else’s holiday gathering? That’s okay, too. Call up your friends and create your own celebration just like Joann’s or ask them all to bring a tradition of their own to the table and create something new. Out of all of the people in the world, someone else is definitely alone during the holidays too. Why not all be alone together?
Another option is to not worry about being together at all. A little alone time is never a bad thing. Take yourself on a hike, out to eat, or to the movies. Pamper yourself with a day of relaxing massages, facials, and pedicures. Slow down long enough to read that book you’ve been wanting to dive into or binge watch that show that everyone at the office has been talking about. It is healthy to have a little “me” time and to take care of yourself.
You already sound really busy this holiday season! After creating your own holiday and taking some time for yourself using the tips above, why not take care of people less fortunate than you are? The holidays are a big time for volunteering, and it will make you feel good to take care of others rather than sit around being lonely. Volunteer at the local soup kitchen or help deliver toys to kids who may not have gotten any without the help of an outside organization. Feed your soul by helping others.
If all of these things sound like they’re too hard or not up your alley, and you’re still feeling the pressures of loneliness, then there are still more options. One is to get out of town. Hop on a plane, gas up the car, buy a bus ticket, or catch a train. Go for a weekend getaway or a whole week. Whatever you need to do to help push through the holidays, you do. The second option is to just put your head down and push through the holiday. Take this time to catch up on sleep, order from the takeout place you like so much, and waste the day away. We could all do with a little laziness every now and again, so take advantage of this time to do just that.
The holidays can be very stressful to a lot of people for a lot of different reasons but remember it doesn’t have to be perfect or spent in any particular way. This is your holiday, and you get to choose how you want to spend it. It can be alone, with friends, volunteering at a shelter, or vacationing. You choose.