The holidays can be brutally depressing for those who have suffered a personal loss or who may live away from their loved ones. Maybe you're fresh out of a relationship or have been single for so long that you question whether or not you'll ever have a partner. Or perhaps you've recently lost a parent or close family member? Any of these instances can leave you feeling alone, sad, and hopeless. A study conducted by the National Alliance on Mental Illness found that 64% of people living with a mental illness reported that their conditions worsened around the holidays.
Although loneliness might be a challenging obstacle to overcome, there are ways to do so, but only if you're willing to be open-minded. Here are some ways to surround yourself with love this holiday season, even if it's only self-love.
Remember Those You Lost
Grieving during the holidays can be heart-wrenching, especially when you consider the many Christmases you've spent with the ones you loved before their passing. Do not avoid these feelings. Instead, find a way to honor them. Visit places they enjoyed during their lives. Did they have a favorite ice cream shop? Drop in and order their favorite dessert. Maybe they fancied being outdoors, so a picnic or beach day may allow you to remember the good times with the ones you miss the most.
Find Holiday Events In Your Area
If you cannot get to your loved ones, try meeting new people via events and mixers in your area. You can usually find these on sites such as Eventbrite. Facebook also offers thousands of communities that bring people together. Look up groups with similar interests as yours and connect with members. Oftentimes, groups host events to bring members together with holiday brunches, mixers, and other meet-and-greet gatherings.
Technology is our greatest connector, and you should use it this season, especially if you aren't near your relatives. Plan to eat dinner via Zoom with your loved ones. You may even have a virtual game night. While this will take some coordination to ensure you're properly included in their gatherings, it can be extremely rewarding.
In addition to its well-known benefits for reducing stress and anxiety, yoga also has loneliness-relieving properties. Yoga combines the body and mind to create relaxation and internal stability. The practice's various poses, stretches, and calmness have been proven to lessen the effects of loneliness, stress, and anxiety. It won't solve all of your problems, but heading to your local park or beach with your Yoga mat can brighten up your Christmas morning.
There is no definitive loneliness cure, and unfortunately, not every method will work for everyone. However, don't knock it until you try it, especially if it means you'll be in better spirits this holiday.
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