Spending the holidays alone doesn’t have to suck! I wish I knew that when I first parted from my family and friends to go study abroad. The first year is always the hardest. You get homesick and nostalgic. Nostalgia can kill your holiday spirit and your enthusiasm for the upcoming New Year.
Here are 5 things you can do, to make your Christmas and New Year’s eve joyful even if you are spending them by yourself.
1. Decorate Your Space
Adding a few garlands and Christmas lights or even a small Christmas tree can go a long way. It creates the atmosphere of celebration and joy around you. And guess what? You don’t have to break the bankto decorate. you can get inexpensive items from the dollar or discount store. Or if you are crafty and patient, you can DIY (Do It Yourself) your own holiday decor items.
2. Practice Gratitude
In a time where you are most likely to feel sad or nostalgic about how your previous Christmas used to be, Gratitude must become your friend. Why? Well, because it is hard to be unhappy when you are grateful for what you have. DIY Tip: Get a Mason Jar and flash cards; and each day right down something you are thankful for. Put the cards in the jar. On a day when you feel lonely or sad, you can pull them out of the jar and read those cards to yourself. You will feel much better.
3. Video Chat With Family & Friends
Just because you are physically away, doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate with them. Hearing the voice of your loved ones can brighten your mood and vice versa. If you and your family are lucky enough to live in a country where the internet connection is great, then You win! You can spend Christmas Day or New Year’s eve with them via Skype, FaceTime or WhatsApp.
4. Create Your Own Festive Atmosphere
Now is the time to do what you always wanted to for the holidays but couldn’t do because you had to take you family or friends’ opinions into account. You are fully responsible for the atmosphere that you will be living in during this season. If it feels sad, then make it joyful. You are in charge, you can create your own traditions. It took me years to realize that. One of my little tradition is to jam on old school music; bake a sweet potato pie that I will enjoy in front of a Tyler Perry movie or comedy show.
For others, it could be different. They may use that time to read & reflect, go out to eat or even go on a solo travel. The point is: Do what brings you joy and happiness.
Here are some of my favorite Christmas movies. Check them out!
5. Be a Blessing to Someone in Need
The holidays are not just for receiving, it is also for giving back. Whether you decide to volunteer for a Soup Kitchen or take the initiative you run a food/toy drive, it is such a rewarding and fulfilling experience to know you made someone else’s day a little better. This is a priceless experience. It will make you appreciate what you have.
There you go! You don’t have to be miserable. If you do those 5 things I can guarantee you that your holiday season would be better even when you are spending it alone. Remember: keep a positive mind and do a little self-care. You are worth it.
Have you ever spent the holidays alone? If so how did you feel?
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