Are you dreading spending the holidays alone? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. We promise, spending the holidays alone doesn’t have to be miserable. In fact, it’s totally possible to do the holidays alone in style and have a great time.
The situation isn’t ideal. Most of us didn’t imagine the pandemic lasting through the holiday season — but this doesn’t mean that the holidays are going to be ruined. Remember that by spending the holidays by yourself, you’re being a responsible citizen, friend, and family member. You are doing your part to stop the spread of a deadly virus and keep your loved ones safe.
How to Celebrate the Holidays Alone
Just because you’re going to be alone, it doesn’t mean you have to spend the holidays moping around. There are plenty of things that you can do to bring some of that holiday cheer into your life, even without your loved ones physically present.
Here are 8 ideas to celebrate the holidays alone in style.
1. Have virtual celebrations
With all the technology we have at our fingertips, you don’t have to be truly alone this holiday season — you can socialize from a distance. Use Zoom or another video conferencing platform to “meet up” with your loved ones for dinners or even host Secret Santa gift exchanges (just draw names and mail each other gifts beforehand). Or, you can take the old fashioned route and simply call up some friends or family members to have a chat. Bonus points if you call someone else who is spending the holidays alone to brighten their day.
2. Practice gratitude
It’s easy to get hung up on the negative, but you can get yourself out of that negative cycle by practicing gratitude. Even though you can’t physically be with your loved ones this holiday season, focus on what is good and what you can be thankful for. Make a list of things you have to be grateful for, and revisit it, and reflect when you feel like you’re slipping into a negative mind space. If you’re grateful for certain people, be sure to spread some holiday cheer and let them know! We could all use an extra boost this year.
3. Stick with tradition
Just because you can’t engage in traditions with your loved ones it doesn’t mean that you can’t stick to them. Do you always watch The Grinch with your siblings every year? Watch it solo or use Netflix Party to watch it “together.” Do you normally make latkes during Hanukkah or bake cookies every Christmas Eve with your parents? Who says you can’t break out the family recipe and make them yourself (and of course, leave some out for Santa). Sticking with tradition can help things to feel a little more normal, even if you’re engaging in the tradition by yourself.
4. Indulge in self-care
One bonus of being by yourself? Having extra alone time to indulge in some juicy self-care. No need to feel guilty slipping away from your family for some much needed alone time, because this year the holiday is yours for the taking. Break out a new face mask, have a peaceful meditation session, take an extra-long bath with festive bath bombs, or take a relaxing yoga class. Think of self-care as a gift to yourself — because it is!
5. Treat yourself
While we’re on the topic of self-care, you can treat yourself in other ways, too. If there’s ever a time to splurge and treat yourself to a little something special, it’s now. Whether you buy yourself those shoes you’ve had your eyes on for months, order takeout from your favorite restaurant, or simply give yourself a couple of days off from your diet, you deserve it. This is the year to revel in the small pleasures.
6. Give back
Don’t forget to treat others less fortunate than you, too. Choose a charity or two that you support that you can donate to, go through your closet and put together a bag of things you don’t wear anymore to donate, or contact organizations you admire and ask how you can get involved. Giving back will give you a sense of purpose and make you feel good, even if you’re alone.
7. Look forward to the future
The holiday season is a time to look forward to the upcoming year, and boy, do we have things to look forward to. All those delays, cancellations, and rescheduled events — eventually 2021 is going to provide a cornucopia of things we’ve been denied all these long months. So leave disastrous 2020 in the past and look towards 2021 and beyond, when things may return to “normal.” Make a list of 2021 goals, create a vision board, or daydream about places you’d like to visit once it’s safe.
8. Reach out for help
Still having a rough time after all of these tips? Don’t feel bad about reaching out to a loved one for help. Let a trusted friend or family member know that you’re struggling, and how they can help, whether you need some advice or someone to simply listen to you vent. If things are getting dark, or you feel like you need the help of a trained crisis counselor, there are resources available. You can text HOME to 741741 to be connected to someone from Crisis Text Line, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline if you’d prefer to speak to someone on the phone at 1-800-273-TALK.
There are so many things you can do by yourself this holiday season that will make you feel less alone and bring you the same holiday cheer you’ve felt during holiday seasons past. Just because you’ll be alone doesn’t mean you can’t have a special and memorable holiday. Follow these tips and your holiday season can still be merry and bright!