Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it. ~William Arthur Ward
The holidays are fast approaching and your heart is beating fast. Why? Because here you are with no significant other! No, boo! No, honey! And yes, you are dreading it. After all what are the holidays without someone to love on and have them love on you! While I will not downplay that sharing the holidays with a special loved one can make it quite magical and wonderful, this is not the only way to have a special holiday season.
First things first; it is my most fervent belief that we can thank Madison Avenue for many things about the holidays that we have come to love and accept. Things like wearing a certain outfit, giving and getting gifts, decorations and of course food, food, food! So, the consumerism ways of Madison Avenue cannot just stop there. Why not hype up the fact that people are feeling very happy to be together and make them believe that they should do something about it. Something like buy jewelry, cars, etc. And don’t forget the ultimate holiday celebration, a proposal! So, we see all these ads of happy couples frolicking around and oh so happy to be together and have each other. Their dialogue is all about how they are so fortunate to have each other especially at this time of the year. Is it no wonder when we are solo we feel almost like an oddity?
I say it is time to rethink the holidays! There is so much more that goes on at that time of year that deserve our attention. If you have a significant other, enjoy them, but if you don’t, below are 5 activities that can help you get over this time and also make you feel a whole lot better not to mention spreading some joy among some really needy folks. They will prove to be very rewarding and will increase your love quotient and make you feel appreciated and needed.
1. Volunteer – Think about it, the people you volunteer to help are not worried about more than just a loved one, they are worried that they have no one at all to love them. Whether it is serving food at a Soup Kitchen or playing Santa to sick children or even volunteering at a home for abused women, this is the gift that gives you right back.
2. Visiting a Nursing home – How great would it be to adopt a resident of the nursing home and visit them from Thanksgiving straight through to the new year. When other residents are getting visitors, there are always those who have no one coming to see them. To spend this time with them will definitely give them a boost and will boost your spirits as well.
3. Visting the Children’s hospital – Alas, some of the people who love and enjoy the wonder of the holidays the most are children. Even though many hospitals try to make it as festive as they can for the children, they will be the first to welcome anyone who wants to volunteer to help them make it as fun as possible.
4. Reach out to other single people – Although it may feel like you are the only one who is single, you are not. Whether it is someone who recently got divorced, or lost a loved one or just broke up with their girlfriend/boyfriend, you may not have to look very far to find a few such folks. They may very well be people that you already know well. Why not host a pot luck or white elephant party for singles. Single people just want to enjoy celebrating too! Like you, they may not want to be alone either. With all there is to think about when you are facing the holidays alone, what a great diversion it would be to coordinate such an event. Now you have something else to occupy your mind and also look forward to.
5. Gratitude – I would be remiss if I did not mention what the holidays are supposed to be about in the first place. It is about gratitude. Giving to others, thanking others, and remembering what others have done is and should be the theme of this time of year. Here is a perfect opportunity to reflect on what you DO have. You cannot have a woe is me attitude when you are practicing a gratitude attitude! Make a concerted effort to think of all those who do love you and think of ways you can let them know you appreciate their love and care. This may be a great time to start chronicling all the love that you do have in your life and all the things that you can be grateful for.
Loneliness at holiday time is common and occurs for one reason or the other. Examine your feelings and make sure that this is just a phase and not a permanent situation that you are in. The cure for your average loneliness is to surround yourself with friends and family. Take advantage of this as much as possible. Visit people who have not seen you in a while, make the rounds. Reinvigorate friendships and bolster family relations. Remember holidays are about gratitude of friends and family and not just one specific person. Let as many enjoy your presence as possible cause with everything else in life good or bad, this too shall pass!
Peace & Light
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