Being single during the holidays can be tough if it makes you feel like the odd person out. It can be the bane of your existence at holiday gatherings if your family is waiting with bated breath for you to bring home that special someone. But you don’t have to let being single during the holidays get you down this season. After all, right now, you’re staying focused on your recovery, and a relationship can add an extra layer of stress and complication to your life.
You’ll find romance and love soon enough—probably when you’re least expecting it. In the meantime, here are some helpful tips for being okay with being single during the holidays.
1. Surround yourself with good friends.
Staying busy with friends during the holidays can help take your focus off of being single. Make an effort to engage in enjoyable activities with others. Spend quality time with good friends to reduce feelings of isolation. A healthy social life can make being single during the holidays a lot less lonely, and it’s a pillar of successful recovery, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.1
2. Have a plan for handling questions.
If you’re not prepared for it, comments from well-meaning relatives about your singlehood can sting and make you feel conspicuous and inadequate. Don’t let it put a damper on your good time. Come up with some clever or funny comebacks ahead of time to nip that conversation in the bud.
3. Hold a singles event.
Plan an epic soiree for the single people in your life. Invite single friends, classmates, co-workers, support group members and even mateless family members. Don’t make it a pity party, but rather a rocking good time with others in your boat. Put on some great music, serve up some delectable dishes and mocktails and pull out some rollicking party games.
A singles event is a good opportunity to broaden and strengthen your support system, and it will serve to remind you that you’re not the only one who’s single.
4. Take a risk.
If there’s someone you’ve been wanting to ask out—even platonically—now might be the time to do it. If you think you can deal with a potential rejection without experiencing a setback in your recovery, why not make the move? Keep it casual, and choose a low-pressure activity. Invite her to a holiday work event, or ask him if he wants to help you shop for Christmas gifts. If not, no problem. If so, you may have a date for that imminent holiday gathering after all.
5. Embrace being single during the holidays, and focus on doing what makes you happy.
Make the choice to embrace being single during the holidays instead of letting it throw a wrench into your enjoyment of life. Do something every day that makes you happy and keeps you busy and active. Dust off your art supplies, challenge yourself to train for a 5k or take up baking.
Engage in fun social activities where singlehood is irrelevant. Join a bowling league, take a drama class or volunteer for a local charity. These things will not only provide more opportunities for getting to know other people, but they’ll also serve you well in your recovery journey. Having hobbies is an essential relapse prevention tool.2
Worrying about being single during the holidays will only add to your stress level. Have a plan of action to stay busy, and have some fun this holiday season to get you through it unscathed.