Guess what Beautiful? I’ve got some good news for you! Once the dust settles and the papers are all signed, divorce can open doors to new adventures during the holidays.
The lights and natural beauty of the season provide us with hope if we can only embrace it. Even during this pandemic, there are sure to be all kinds of virtual parties and events, to attend if you enjoy those kinds of activities. And if you are more of a snuggle up next to the fire kind of girl, you can indulge in some well-deserved “Me Time.” Taking the necessary space to relax and enjoy time alone is often just what the doctor ordered after a divorce.
Take a moment to remember your life as a young single woman when everything was possible, and try to rekindle that sense of adventure as you approach this year’s holiday season. Silver linings abound during life changes. Below are some tips to keep loneliness at bay. With a little bit of planning ahead, you can find alternate and meaningful ways to experience most of them safely and virtually, even in the midst of the pandemic.
Surround Yourself with Upbeat People
No matter how much you adore them, there are times when you may be in your best interest to love some people from a distance. Steer clear of the “Debby Downers” in your life. You know the ones I’m talking about. They are your cheerless girlfriends and colleagues walking around with a glass that is always half-empty, the friends who seem to take pleasure in comforting you by exchanging sad stories in a downward spiral to the bottom of a wine bottle.
Instead, choose to spend time with the people in your life that make you laugh. By surrounding yourself with optimistic companions who know how to have fun, it becomes much easier to remember that life is lived in the moment, not in the past.
Celebrate the Holidays Your Way
Granted, the holidays often conjure up fond memories of family traditions and get-togethers that might leave you feeling somewhat off-balance in a post-divorce world if you allow yourself to dwell on the past. The key is to consider all the new possibilities in your single life and to finally do things your way.
Maybe you’ve always envied friends who traveled over the holidays, secretly wishing you could escape to an exotic locale and skip out on the stress of the “in-laws” and preparing the holiday meal for eight. Now is the perfect time to start thinking about and planning ways you can change things up to create the holiday of your dreams putting your needs first, for once. You deserve it.
Examine Unrealistic Holiday Expectations and Selective Memory
When you’re newly divorced, it is far too easy to focus on certain treasured memories from our past when life seemed almost perfect. The excitement of your young toddlers ripping holiday gifts open with a huge smile on their face is not something you want to ever forget. Understandably, these family celebrations are burned into our brains as moments of perfection.
Perspective is key here so that you can move forward and stop focusing only on perfect moments from your past. Remember the unbearable stress that also accompanied those same holidays. Concerns over shopping for everyone, feeding your extended family, and trying to stay on a budget often put a damper on those good times.
For many, the word “dread” is often associated with approaching holidays. There is no denying that most mothers and wives are in charge of making the holidays special for everyone else while suffering from a lack of sleep and impossible time restraints.
Breathe this year. Relish this moment for what it offers. You finally get to pick and choose how you celebrate the holidays without being responsible for his family and their needs. We’re talking about some serious perks to being divorced. Freedom is good.
It is almost impossible to feel lonely if you volunteer to help others. The holidays offer many opportunities to get involved in your community. Feeding the hungry, collecting gifts for needy families, and checking in on elderly neighbors and family members to provide some holiday cheer are all worthwhile endeavors.
You meet the nicest people when you volunteer. Building a network of like-minded people is always an excellent strategy for feeling less alone in the world during the holidays.
We all enjoy a bit of pampering. What better time than the holidays to indulge in some gifts we give ourselves. Treating yourself to a spa day is a popular option for many new divorcees. Is there a better way to look your best for a special holiday party?
In keeping with the idea of a new life, many women embrace the idea of a complete makeover as they move into the future. New clothes and a fresh hairstyle will make you feel like a new woman. The opportunities for boosting our mood are almost endless.
Feeling lonely is a state of mind. Being alone is a different matter altogether. You can beat loneliness during the holidays by simply making the effort to stay busy and enjoy the season in your own way.
Remember, the holiday blues are optional. Chin up Beautiful; it’s time to be the sparkle of your own eyes!
Jolisa Webb, CDC Certified Divorce Coach®
Divorce Coach Confidante
Jolisa Webb is a CDC Certified Divorce Coach ®, and the owner of Beauty in the Midst, LLC, a Women and Veteran-owned small business coaching, consulting company headquartered in Fort Washington, MD