The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
Let’s be honest, it is absolutely dreadful to be single during the holidays. It comes every year like clockwork: the moment Halloween ends, there’s pressure to find someone to bring home for Thanksgiving, a partner to enjoy Christmas activities with, a New Year’s kiss, and the infamous Valentine. With a four-month-long season of holidays dedicated to couples, it’s okay to feel like you’re missing out on some special traditions. Here are three non-cliché ways for you to embrace your singleness and (hopefully) enjoy this holiday season.
1. Understand the media’s interpretation of the season.
Whether it may be posts on social media or holiday-themed romcoms & songs, this time of year is heavily commercialized as a season of “romance”. However, even with holiday bliss, it is hardly ever a perfect time of year. According to an article from Talkspace, “People are only posting pictures of themselves in their nicest holiday outfits at fun parties with their friends, not nights spent alone in PJs or arguments around the dinner table”. Instead of trying to live up to the unrealistic expectations of the season, approach each holiday by thinking of past positive experiences. Grasp onto the things you loved about the season before being single was an issue – revisit special traditions, re-watch your favorite Christmas movie, or embrace the crisp air with a fun holiday sweater. Ultimately, don’t allow the media to make or break your holiday joy.
2. Devote your energy to loved ones.
Holidays don’t have to be about couples’ activities or cute photo ops if you don’t want them to be. In fact, for single people, it’s a great opportunity to reconnect with close family members and friends. While a majority of the year is filled with busy schedules, deadlines, and canceled plans, the holidays are an opportunity to put your day-to-day life on pause and appreciate those around you. According to an article from Colorado State University, whether you partake in traditions with loved ones such as baking treats, watching holiday movies, or ice-skating, gathering together in any shape or form is what the holiday season is all about. Focusing on the relationships already in your life reiterates the idea that singleness does not equal loneliness.
3. Designate a plus one.
This may be controversial, but a plus one is not limited to a potential love interest. Although it could if you want it to; have you ever watched the Holidate (2020)? But let’s say your life isn’t a fake-dating holiday romcom; in that case, grab a close friend, sibling, or co-worker who is willing to accompany you to various holiday festivities. According to an article from The Muse, a plus one eases tensions, makes uncomfortable situations bearable, creates a distraction from social anxieties, and makes it easier to mingle with people you don’t normally interact with. During holiday get-togethers, you’ll sometimes want company, so be sure to reach out to those who already love and support you.
With the never-ending matching onesies, gingerbread house competitions, romantic getaways, and holiday-themed engagements, no one enjoys being single this time of year. However, single or taken, there is good and bad in every circumstance at every time of the year. No matter what your Facebook relationship status reads, remain open to embracing all of the holiday “joy” this season has to offer.