The holidays can be one of the most challenging and difficult times of the year if you’re single, especially if it’s your first holiday season alone. I’m not going to sugarcoat it – it can be harder than you imagined. Many people find the loneliness overwhelming. Here are some tips to make it a little easier for you.

Holiday-lights1. Decorating. When decorating your house, do it differently than you have in the past. Put the tree in a different place in your house. Buy new ornaments and other decorations. The point is to make it look different than it did in previous years.

2. Start Some New Traditions. Do things differently than you did in previous years. If you typically celebrate Christmas on Christmas Day, try celebrating it on Christmas Eve this year, and vice versa. Or, instead of cooking Christmas dinner, go out to dinner. Mix things up a little bit – you might find that you start some new traditions that you’ll carry with you in the years to come.

3. Delegate. The holidays are always stressful. It’s easy to become overwhelmed by everything that needs to be done. Ask for help. Hire a personal assistant to help with some of the decorating, gift shopping, wrapping, or grocery shopping. If you have small children, hire a babysitter more than you normally do.

4. Feel Your Feelings. It’s normal to be sad and melancholy during the holidays if you’re single. The mistake I see many people make is they try to avoid those feelings and push them away. But one of the laws of nature says that what you resist persists. Just remember that your feelings aren’t “wrong,” and there’s nothing wrong with you for feeling sad. Don’t judge yourself or tell yourself you should be over it – and don’t let anyone else tell you that either! If you allow yourself to feel whatever you’re feeling, you’ll find that the feelings will pass. They’ll probably come back again, so just let yourself feel them again, and again, they’ll pass.

5. Stay Present. It’s also normal to think about past holiday seasons. But when you’re thinking about the past, you’re missing out on what’s going on right now, and you might just miss something wonderful! If you have young children or grandchildren, you don’t want to miss a moment of their joy and happiness, and if your thoughts are focused on the past, you’re likely to miss some very special moments. And those are the moments that will create the happy memories that you’ll have in years to come.

6. Give Yourself A Gift. Go buy something you’ve always wanted. It doesn’t have to be big or expensive. Treat yourself to a massage or a mani-pedi. Spend some quiet time alone with a cup of tea and a good book. Savor and enjoy your own company. Or go on a trip someplace you’ve always wanted to go. I do not recommend going someplace you went with your ex! You’re trying to do something different and make new memories.

7. Extra Self-Care. Get plenty of sleep. Watch your alcohol intake. Make sure to exercise and eat well. We all tend to do too much during the holidays, and if it’s particularly emotional for you this year, it’s critical that you be gentle with yourself.

Whether this is your first holiday season as a newly-single woman or not, it can still be lonely. Following these tips will make it a little easier. If you need additional support, please email me at lori@lorilatimer.com for a complimentary consultation.

Christmas BallsI wish you and yours a joyous holiday season and a Happy & Healthy New Year!