The holidays are upon us, and the time of year when you’re supposed to be feeling warmest and fuzziest can often be when you feel the most empty. Whether dealing with seasonal depression, grief, or not being home for the holidays, it’s hard to keep those feelings at bay with the emphasis on ~togetherness~ that’s part and parcel of the season. These tips on how to deal with loneliness over the holidays are a useful starting point for figuring out ways to cope, whether it be through distraction, processing feelings with patience, or coming up with creative ways to meet new people.
The reality is that this time of year is incredibly difficult for many people. It can be easy to forget that we’re actually not alone in feeling lonely or sad. But self-care strategies for dealing with loneliness over the holidays abound. Here are some places experts suggest starting.
1. Start A New Holiday Tradition That’s Just For You. Whether it’s seeing a movie on Christmas Eve or baking a feast for yourself, revel in what you really love.
2. Volunteer… Sign up for soup kitchens, virtual phone banks, food delivery services, gift drives, or other holiday programs. It takes the focus away from what you feel you’re lacking and creates a feeling of connection and purpose,”
3. Surround Yourself With People & Tell Them How You Feel... “As much as you might want to isolate yourself, push yourself to do the opposite,” “Surround yourself with people who make you feel good.
4. Spend Quality Time With Yourself… As much as we need to be connected with other people, we also need to have that constant connection with ourselves. So decline as many invitations as you’d like, ask for help if you need it, and take time for yourself.
5. Reach Out To People You’ve Lost Touch With… Think about the friends you used to enjoy, but don’t see much anymore, Use the holidays as a reason to hit’em up.” Social media, text, email, works.
Try not to push your emotions away around the holidays. Don’t judge or try to change it; simply sit with it. (Everything happens for a reason.)
7. Try To Avoid Dating Apps Or Jumping Into A New Relationship. The experts say the Holidays are not the time to look for a new relationship.
Above all, it’s important to remember that you’re doing your best during a notoriously stressful time. There’s nothing inherently wrong with feeling lonely, and while it can be an unpleasant experience, riding out the wave of your feelings will always land you on other side eventually.