COVID-19, lockdowns, restrictions, and social distancing have resulted in many of us having to change our holiday plans, and, in some cases being, alone over Christmas. So how do we fly solo during a time when we were expecting to be around loved ones?
Here are four tips to help deal with the stresses and strains of being alone over Christmas:
1. It is okay to not be okay.
If you are feeling sad, upset, frustrated, anxious, or angry with your Christmas plans being cancelled, then know that this is a perfectly normal and natural reaction. There is nothing wrong with you. Give yourself the time, space, and permission to feel all these feelings.
2. Switch emotional thinking to rational thinking.
Reacting to change emotionally is instinctive however it results in us feeling overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and distressed. Switch your mindset to one that is logical, rational, and calmer.
Take a step back and look at the bigger picture. The reason why you are not able to celebrate holidays with your loved ones is that you want to keep them safe, you want to protect them, and avoid putting them at risk. The time apart from your loved one is for a worthwhile cause.
3. Focus on the things you can control.
Currently, there are so many things that we aren’t in control of. We can’t plan ahead; we can’t travel; we can’t visit loved ones; we can’t be indoors with all our family and friends.
Constantly focusing on the things that we can’t control creates stress, anxiety, and feelings of overwhelm. Instead, change your mindset and think about and focus on the things that you can control.
>> You can celebrate Christmas online with your loved ones.
>> You can meet other people, but meet them outdoors.
>> You can postpone celebrations instead of cancelling. That way you have something to look forward to.
>> You can enjoy the solitude and make the most of the “me” time.
>> You can appreciate not having to rush around preparing, cooking, or hosting.
>> You can use the alone time to catch up on projects, tasks, or activities that you may have been meaning to get around to doing.
This has been a chaotic, challenging, and testing time for many. It is easy to start focusing on all that is going wrong, everything that we have missed out on or not been able to do.
However, nothing good is going to come from that. Instead, adopt the attitude of gratitude by being grateful and thankful for the things that you do have. You are healthy; your loved ones are healthy; you are safe and well; there is food on the table; a roof over your head; and heating to warm up your home. For many, all of these things are far from reality.
What are you going to choose to be grateful for?