You Will Be Loved This Holiday Season

holiday-loneliness

This time of year can be brutal on some of us, even the ones safely coupled up. I wanted to post this so that anybody suffering or feeling isolated will know they aren’t alone. You matter. You will be loved. Find one moment of beauty in each day. Know that how you feel is temporary. Most importantly, don’t give up. For the first time in forever I took an Ativan last night. Things…haven’t been great. Lots of restless sleep and crying jags. I’ve spoken before of how the holidays just remind me that my parents are no longer here and my family has been blown to bits. It’s been rough, but working out and a new found passion (which I’ll get to below)  has helped me through it.

Here’s a list of suggestions for those of for whom this time of year feels like a constant uphill battle. Feel free to add your own in the comments.

1. Take on a project - Maybe it’s time to re-organize your closet? Write that story? Read that book? Take  a few minutes to write down a list of things you’d like to attack and accomplish between now and the new year.

2. Indulge in things that bring you comfort - Here’s a secret: I love cheesy rom-comish books. I grew up reading YA romance novels and remember the pleasure I got from escaping my rather lonely world and delving into the life of a girl kind of like me: awkward, unsure of herself, craving love so she could be like everyone else. I’ve downloaded a few books like this one and plan on getting comfy, making some hot apple cider with rum, and getting lost in the fairy tale love stories.

3. Reach out to others - Sometimes we’re so consumed by our own pain we forget that other people  – maybe even ones close to us – are struggling. Pay attention. Read their tweets or Facebook page or Instagram. Write an encouraging comment or DM. Let them know you see and hear them.

4. Download some self-improvement apps  - I fall asleep most nights listening to different apps. One is about combatting depression. Another is about The Law of Attraction. Another helps me with my goal of becoming more disciplined and motivated. Go to the Play Store on your phone and search by keywords to find apps you like.

5. Get into a show you haven’t scene - I just finished Mindhunter, which I thought was just okay. Next on my list is The Crown. I have no interest in Stranger Things or Dark or anything similar. I like a character driven series.

6. Revisit a show you love –  I re-watched the episode of The Good Wife where Will died and remembered just how great that show was. On days where I have time on my hands, I sometimes dive into early seasons of Grey’s Anatomy to get my Christina Yang fix.

7. Donate to a good cause - You don’t have to spend money. Go through your closet and find items of clothes you no longer wear, wash them, them fold them and put them into a laundry bag and bring them to your closest churh or house of worship. You can do the same thing with canned food. Get out of your head and remember you’re not the only one going through a rough time. In fact, many people probably have it far worse than you or I do.

8. Maybe ditch the dating apps? – A lot of people feel pressure to find someone for holiday parties and NYE. Maybe…don’t do that? By all means, if going out on dates is something you enjoy, go for it. But if you’re feeling fragile, maybe tread lightly. Rejection this time of year can be especially brutal for many. Take care of yourself.

9. Actually do some self-improvement - I’ve been looking into what it takes to become a fitness instructor. My first step is to get certified in CPR, so I’ll be doing that over the next couple of weeks.  The next step will be to get my fitness instructor certification through ACE or another similar program. I’m thinking about becoming a cycling instructor. I’m up to 3 classes a week and I love it. It provides me a way to connect with and motivate people, which is really what inspired me to get certified.

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8 Responses to “You Will Be Loved This Holiday Season”

  1. CT Says:

    This has been one of your best posts this year. It shows that you are in a different mindset, one that is looking forward not backward, and it makes ME happy to see. Since the “holiday” season now extends into October, I feel like I have to hold on for 3 months rather than 1. Your list is fantastic. I have made my donations to St. Jude Children’s Hospital, have been exercising daily, have been incorporating mediation in addition to yoga and love both, have made plans for next year, and finally felt peace in a season that preaches peace but rarely delivers.

    All the best to you this season. Peace and joy to you.

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  2. fuzzilla Says:

    Somewhat related: I wonder if anyone can recommend time management apps they like (for Android)? Something where you’d have a list of tasks to complete for the week but not necessarily at a certain time? Like, I wanna check off that I did, say, three workout videos that week and get a gold star, not get scolded for not doing them precisely at 7 p.m. on Wednesday. I’ve looked at a couple apps, but nothing has rocked my world so far.

    Good luck on the fitness certification!

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  3. Marshmallow Says:

    An amazing post from a truly inspiring woman!

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  4. mgm531 Says:

    As I reside in Southern California I have found myself less affected by the melancholy malaise that often comes from being single with the onset of cooler weather. After all it’s hard to imagine ‘cuffing season’ when it barely gets below the mid 60’s in the dead of winter. I do find myself missing the festive atmosphere that often accompanies snowy days around Christmas time, or going Christmas light watching in the crisp night air, but since the weather is so good during winter I can (and do) many outdoor activities all year round. I’m a cyclist and the good weather means I can ride all through out the winter and I recently got back into mountain biking, which I haven’t done in a very long time. Hiking, walking or just taking a trip the beach are excellent ways for me to keep my spirits up during the winter time.

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  5. mgm531 Says:

    As I reside in Southern California I have found myself less affected by the melancholy malaise that often comes from being single with the onset of cooler weather. After all it’s hard to imagine ‘cuffing season’ when it barely gets below the mid 60’s in the dead of winter. I do find myself missing the festive atmosphere that often accompanies snowy days around Christmas time, or going Christmas light watching in the crisp night air, but since the weather is so good during winter I can (and do) many outdoor activities all year round. I’m a cyclist and the good weather means I can ride all through out the winter and I recently got back into mountain biking, which I haven’t done in a very long time. Hiking, walking or just taking a trip to the beach are excellent ways for me to keep my spirits up during the winter time.

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  6. Noquay Says:

    Awesome post Moxie!
    Yep, this time of year can really suck. Cold plus loooong nights plus no family plus friends all traveling and not here. This wasn’t a good year; three friends died, a fourth almost did, boyfriend of 11/2 years cheated and expected to still be friends, work situation deteriorated further, no quality guys wanting an rship with someone living in my town. Looking at quitting regardless of whether I have a new job, selling out and moving I don’t know where, at 57. As I have three Science degrees, thinking of training as a dhoula or midwife. Scared s$&@less but know I’ll stay alone for good if I remain. Changed those things I could but understand a lot of what is going wrong with work and life here is beyond my control. So yep, I get it. The holiday season seems to exacerbate everything that’s wrong in my life so I opt out. No tree, no presents, no stuffing myself with food I do not need. This week adopted an ancient cat no one wanted, gave to local and non local charities, and, as a 20+ year Water Protector, I gave support to the struggle in the names of my friends rather than giving stuff they don’t need. Xmas day I will be self-improving, climbing steep slopes at 11k+ feet on snowshoes, pushing my system to the max. I’ll revel in a few weeks of unstructured, unregimented time between the semesters. Burning calories rather than consuming them. When I recall all the stress and expense over the holidays, I am grateful I don’t have to participate.

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    • Eliza Says:

      I. you give you much credit Noquay. I am feeling quite alone lately. No matter how much I try to give at work, and go the extra mile, and smile while I do that….I can’t seem to get appreciated by those I support. I am not giving up…but perhaps it’s best to look elsewhere, and by that I mean, look into living and working elsewhere. NY is too “rough” around the edges…for me. Not for everyone else, but not for me anymore. I will donate a lot of clothes to worthy causes, that is a great idea! Will help me feel better. And it does suck when you don’t have many friendships, or strong family ties. This year has been so heart breaking…recently lost my precious Persian…my only companion at home. Feel so lost without her. Need to refocus, and keep distracted.

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  7. Nia Says:

    I really like this sweet and supportive post.
    During the holidays, I think it’s important to make your own rituals and celebrate in your own ways. The media and advertising machine tells us it’s Norman Rockwell or you’re A Loser, but that’s not true.
    It’s tough being completely single and not around family, but all of these suggestions are great.
    My suggestion:
    Take a “reset” if you’re single. Get all the way out of town to a warm, tropical location that’s not the US and doesn’t celebrate Xmas like we do, if at all.
    Treat yourself to your favorite things; whether that’s eating at great restaurants, shopping for cute souvenirs, or exploring jungles and trails and monuments.
    I struggled HARD with Xmas after a few sad years in a row.
    When I moved to Asia, I spent Xmas eve in a fancy hotel and laid out by the pool one year, the next year same, and the third year I spent with a FWB and went to Xmas dinner with ex-pat friends.
    The complete reset away from family and the US was just what I needed. By the time I came home, I was ready to start over and make my own traditions.

    One thing that I really love is the gift giving. I get stuff for even casual friends. It’s fun and challenging to try to give affordable yet nice gifts for as many people as I can and it brings me back to the meaning of the season:
    Togetherness, peace, harmony, gratitude, sharing, love, and hope.
    May all these things be yours this year!!

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