Holiday Season…the loneliest time of the year?
I’ve been asked to share some ideas about this time of year, the holiday season. The time from Thanksgiving through New Year’s is typically the loneliest time of year for most people, single, in a relationship or married.
Often times it’s because we cannot be with family or friends for any number of reasons. Maybe you’re missing someone that’s died. Maybe, as a single, you feel that you’d be imposing on friends that have invited you over.
Maybe last year you were married or in a relationship and this year you’re single for the first time in many, many years. Or, maybe you’ve been single for a while and absolutely dread this time of year because of loneliness and not being in a relationship.
Here’s how to navigate the holidays as a single.
The most important thing is to make sure you have an attitude of gratitude. If you find that difficult to do because you’ve had a rough year, ask yourself this question. If I could be thankful, what would I be thankful for?
It doesn’t have to be anything significant or grand. It can be very simple. I’m thankful for the friends I have. Think about all those that are not as fortunate as you to have the friends you have.
I’m thankful to be able to help someone in a tougher spot than I am. Think about the dollar you put in the offering plate at church. Who did that dollar help? Think about the dollar you put in the Salvation Army red kettle. Who did that dollar help?
I’m thankful for the lights and heat in my home. Think of all those that may not have heat or lights especially during the fall and winter months.
I’m thankful for another day to make an impact on someone’s life. Think about the kind words you shared with someone that needed to hear them. Think about the smile you shared with someone for absolutely no reason. It may have been the only smile they received that day.
Recognize the opportunities you have to be a blessing to others.
What kind of service or charity work can you do through the holiday season? The Salvation Army is always looking for bell ringers. Be a part of your church or charity organization that puts meals together and delivers them to those in need.
Organize a charity drive for coats and warm clothing for those in need. Bake some Christmas cookies and bring them to the local police or fire station. Do random acts of kindness such as helping someone change a flat tire, shovel a sidewalk or driveway. Make a visit to a nursing home to sit and talk with someone that never gets any visitors.
You see, if you just think outside the box a little, you’ll find you can be a blessing to so many people with little or no expense and effort.
Take time to care for yourself.
There can be a lot of stress at this time of year. There are year end work projects, holiday parties, gift shopping, and on and on. Make sure the you don’t over do it and run yourself down. This is the time of year when there are a lot of germs floating around.
Make sure you get ample rest, eat well, and take it easy on the alcohol. All of these things can contribute to a stronger immune system and minimize the possibility of colds and flu. It’s never fun to spend the holidays feeling lousy because of illness.
In addition to taking care of yourself physically, make sure you take care of yourself emotionally. Get out and be social. Make sure you attend parties or socials. If you don’t have a lot of connections, check the social calendars in your local newspaper and TV stations. They generally have plenty of actives listed that you can participate in.
Check with your church or synagogue to see if they have any holiday singles events. Check out social groups such as Meet-up to find singles groups that might be a good fit and provide a way to connect with other singles.
I sincerely hope you’ll think about what I’ve shared with you today and use this information to help you through the holiday season.
I hope I’ve given you at least one new idea to make healthier dating and relationship decisions today.
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Until next week, have a great and blessed day.