The Holidays – that fabulous, fairy-tale time of year when well-meaning friends and family comment on how difficult it must be to light your menorah or trim your tree alone, gushing in disbelief that you’re “still” single and assuming that because you haven’t “found someone,” you can’t.
We’ve been programmed to believe that when something is good, it would be even better if we had a man. What people don’t understand is that being single can be a choice. Let’s face it, we all know those couples who are woefully unhappy yet still post those my-perfect-life photos and page-long declarations of love on their Facebook pages.
How about we lose the idea that the holidays are something we single ladies have to “survive” and change the conversation to something more realistic, more this day and age? How about we embrace the notion that the holidays can be even merrier and brighter for us?! How about we celebrate the most wonderful time of year with our self-esteem and bar carts intact and consider the following tips for savoring the season single:
1. Don’t Romanticize.
Movies and modern media have set up an unrealistic standard of holiday happiness which is… well… bullshit. Don’t torture yourself. Accept the fact that you are single and embrace all the good pieces of it. Don’t read the magazines; ignore the Zales commercials; and for the love of God, don’t watch Hallmark or AMC because there is no need to suffer idealistic holiday love stories while picking fudge from under your fingernails.
2. Share the Holidays With Others.
Make plans with friends and family. Start a tradition for those who are without a partner and adopt each other for the season. Go on a “hollidate” with your bestie. Throw an ugly sweater Christmas party. Spend a cozy night with your gal pals watching shitty holiday movies while drinking hot toddies and spiked eggnog. Misery may love company, but fun loves it more.
3. Spend money… on yourself!
Since you’re not spending money on a him, you have more money to spend on a you. Take a much-needed spa day; buy yourself some gifts and wrap them for under the tree, or stuff a stocking with your name on it. Because while money can’t buy you love, it can buy you that bracelet you’ve been eyeing at Tiffany’s.
4. Enjoy the Joys of the Season.
Visit the tree lots. Do some Christmas light viewing. Sit on Santa’s lap. Grab your peeps and hit the holiday markets with the carolers, festive shopping, and lots and lots of mulled wine. Have some fun!
5. Do a Mini Home Makeover.
Replace your old candles, stencil a wall, switch up some pillows, and take the cozy up a notch. Go full-on Marie Kondo and reorganize your closets, shelf-paper the kitchen, and feng shui your bedroom. There’s nothing like starting a new year with a new-ish home.
6. Go Craft Crazy!
Get out your glue gun, some Modge Podge, and your stack of old Martha Stewart magazines (you know you’ve got them.), and make a trip to JoAnn’s. There are oodles of lampshades, frames, and flower pots just waiting to be decorated for your mini home makeover.
7. Take a Trip.
If you haven’t traveled alone, trust me, you haven’t lived. Be on your own schedule. Do whatever you want. You choose the destination. Experience those magical moments, the little things you’d miss if you were partnered and in a conversation… or an argument. It’s tough not to feel festive when experiencing another culture’s sights, sounds, and tastes.
8. Develop an Attitude of Gratitude.
Do something special for those less fortunate – your local animal shelter, Veterans’ organizations, or any sort of non-profit. Simply a warm blanket and hot meal for someone in need can help put your own life in perspective and drive home the true meaning of thankfulness and giving during the holiday season.
9. Shake and Bake.
The holidays are the perfect excuse to indulge. Forget the diet, stop counting calories, lose the guilt, and go a little sugar crazy. Not only do sweets make for some great gifts, but they also make for some great self-care. You deserve it! Be a little naughty and eat something nice.
10. Block Your Ex on Social Media.
In fact, from October 31 to February 15, stay off of social media altogether. If you’re like me and find the lovey-dovey, matching PJ shots and professional holiday engagement photos kind of nauseating, it would be prudent to step away from your Instagram feed. And if you’re not like me – if you’re a glutton for punishment and feel the need to peek, just remember that people tend to post perfect, glossy versions of their lives online when in truth, reality does not live up to fantasy, their life sucks, and Face Tune has smoothed out the wrinkles. Don’t believe me? Check out 6 Social Media Posts that Are Hurting Your Relationships.
No, we’re not going to survive the holidays; we’re going to live them up. It’s our time too! Lean into the holiday season and embrace what brings you joy. Celebrate your independence. Be thankful for all you have. Be thankful for all you can do. And most importantly, be thankful you aren’t still married to your ex.
Ho ho ho!
Get Your Holiday On!