7 ways to survive a lonely Christmas
It's that time of year
When faces are bright with cheer
Yet someone, somewhere
Feels sadness, as no one is near
People are lonely for so many reasons during the Christmas holidays.
They may have lost a loved one, had a bad breakup, be unable to travel home or have family and friends travel back home to them.
Whatever the reason, there is no doubt that among all the hustle and bustle with anticipation of Christmas, some persons are lingering in the spirit of holiday uncertainty and even despair. But have no fear!
Feeling lonely at this time is more common than you may think and there are many ways to tackle it.
Here are seven to survive loneliness during the Christmas holidays.
1. Have a plan, even if it's to fail
Yes you know the proverb: "If you fail to plan you plan to fail".
Well in some situations planning to fail is not the worst thing - it's actually not having a plan at all!
While seeing how you feel and going with it may be part of your plan, at least know what you'll like out of the day.
Do you want to let your feelings flow? Make sure you have the movies, books, music, food, tissue and even your most comfortable blanket all ready for a day of diving into what you may be feeling.
Want to focus on the positive and make the best of the holiday? Well, plan for it! Get the food, movies, books, music, etc, that will cheer you up. Call those friends/family members who will bring a smile to your face.
Not sure which way to go? Prepare for more than one option - icecream works with every occasion! While everything may not go as planned, setting the tone for what you want the day to be like can help.
2. Know what the holidays mean to you
While you may have the greatest Christmas of your life from next year, you will still remember that holiday season when you were all alone.
You're clearly not at your best and may not have the same cheer as usual, but don't ignore the significance of the holiday to you.
Do you love having a grand meal? Prepare or buy one! Yes, I know a meal is best enjoyed with others, but you have to find comfort even in this situation.
Always take a trip to church? Don't break the tradition if it's that important to you. You may just meet persons who return some of your Christmas spirit and even spend the holidays with them.
Mesmerised by the sparkling tree? Go ahead and put it up!
Change is constant and some traditions will transform over time, but being alone is no reason to put aside those things which are significant to you. Embrace the memories they bring and feel the satisfaction of bolding doing what you love.
3. Let your emotions flow
No matter how much you plan and focus on the positive aspects of the holidays, you cannot dictate your emotions.
If the tears wouldn't stop pouring, let them pour. If you feel surprisingly relaxed and happy, don't feel guilty about it.
Trying to deny your emotions will only cause you delayed stress.
Pour your heart out, laugh it up... do whatever feels natural.
4. Connect online
You can be sure that you are not the only person feeling lonely at this time.
While many restaurants and attractions may be closed, the internet is always online... well that's once you have a good connection.
You can also be sure that there is a website or social media group dedicated to some topic which interests you. Check them out and share your interest with other enthusiasts, while connecting with others.
5. Good deeds
You may be feeling down, but one of the best ways to recognise how fortunate you are despite your current situation is to help others.
It's not too late to check with the Salvation Army or some other charitable organisation to see how you can assist during the holidays.
And if working with other people doesn't sound very appealing to you right now, that's ok.
Think of someone you know who is in need and surprise them with a meal or basket.
Still a little too personal for you right now? Those items would brighten up the day of a homeless person and will surely lift your spirits as you not only help someone else, but appreciate what you have.
6. Say thank you to nature
It may be something as simple as sitting in your garden, going to a park or a beach, whichever you chose, you'll find that nature is very therapeutic.
Add a nice cup of tea or juice to the mix and you're ready to sit back and let the wind caress your mind.
You may find it challenging to relax at first, so focus on your breathing - deep breaths in and out for a while should help.
7. Pamper yourself
You have the time all to yourself, so why not use it to rejuvenate!
Put on music that you love, get your manicure and pedicure on, full facial and take a bath.
And don't forget... PLENTY OF NAPS!
While taking care of yourself will not bring others closer to you, you'll surely feel refreshed!
The Christmas message is one of renewal and hope for a new future. Know that this time of your life will pass and it will make you wiser and stronger.