It’s the end of November, soon to be December and the holidays are currently upon us. All you see are Christmas decorations in the stores and holiday commercials of happy families celebrating mostly Christmas and New Years Eve. Because you are single and not even in a significant relationship, this can be a tough time of year for you, especially if you desire to be a part of a couple and have a family of your own. The feelings that come up range from loneliness to dread to jealousy of your friends and family who seem to have it all!
What’s a single guy or gal to do? I surveyed my friends and I found 5 different strategies that make the holiday season bearable for them.
1.Stay home and catch up on paperwork! What a great time to get your taxes in order! You can also spend your time at home searching the internet dating sites for your true love. Besides, it’s just another day in the year. It will be over before you know it and you will get a jump on next year!
2.Earn overtime pay by working! Most people want to take off during the holidays. Who is going to hold the fort? I have a friend who works in radio. She covers the holiday shift so others can be with their families. I also know someone who helps out in a restaurant once a year to help out a friend who is short-handed. You help others and make some extra pocket change- it’s a win-win!
3. Go out and do the stuff you love! Go to the gym- it’s usually open part of the day (closes early on Christmas Eve and closed Christmas Day). You can go shopping and take advantage of the sales late Christmas Eve or New Years Day. Buy yourself the items you really wanted for yourself. Go see the movie that you are dying to see. Go to a museum exhibit you haven’t been able to visit. You don’t have to worry about anyone holding you back. Or many Churches and Synagogues have volunteer programs on Christmas Day.
4.Seek out singles events and gatherings. There are singles many parties on New Year's Eve in every major City (www.prosinthecity.com) . It’s a great time to meet people because everyone is open and festive. No one wants to be alone on New Year's Eve. Or you can create your own party for friends. Each year I organize a mostly singles dinner for my friends (we’re Jewish) on Christmas day at a local Chinese restaurant. It’s sometime easier not to deal with the couple or family thing - especially if there are married couples with kids. Most of my singles friends yearn to have a family. I also know my single friends are uncomfortable with witnessing the public display of affection sometimes demonstrated by couples. So it’s just easier to hang out with other singles.
5.Take a trip and get out of town! My girlfriend takes a cruise in the Caribbean during Christmas week through New Year's Day. There are also singles ski trips, Club Med and such. Or find a buddy and go away to the destination of your choosing. Not only are you taking a vacation, but you never know who you will meet on your adventure!
A word of caution: Starting in November beware of falling into a false, convenient relationship. Here you find yourself in a precarious relationship that’s somewhat comfortable (and clearly not the one) that can carry you through the cold, dark months of winter. This is the hardest time of the year to be single. It seems as though we are sometimes playing musical chairs and that by late November, whomever you were dating, you attach yourself to this person and settle into a relationship for the time being.
When I was single, I unconsciously found myself in relationships by late Fall so that I would have someone to be with me during the holidays. And with my birthday in January and subsequently the dreaded Valentine’s Day in February, I was then in a position to get the attention and the gifts I truly desired! Funny how by March or April the relationship broke up and I was out in the dating world again as spring blossomed.
So you get to choose. How do you want to spend the holidays? Only you know what feels right for you. Perhaps you want to try something new this year. It’s time to make your plans now so you are not left out in the cold!
Amy Schoen, CPCC, is a certified professional life coach who specializes in helping singles to discover what they need and want in relationships and how to find their desired romantic partner. For down to earth tips and helpful hints on dating and relationships, you can subscribe to her popular monthly ezine or her tele-seminars at:
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