There’s a lot of pressure to be full of holiday cheer this time of year. So what should you do if you’re just . . . not?
Nothing. Absolutely nothing.
All those things that are supposed to make the holiday season warm and cozy and wonderful are the exact same things that can make it feel cold and difficult. We listen to songs about friends and family, but what if home really isn’t at all where you want to be or it’s not possible to get there. Maybe you just moved to a new city and don’t have a lot of friends, or maybe you’re growing in a different direction from your old crowd. Maybe your family is far away. Or broken. Maybe you’re surrounded by family and friends, except for that one person who is missing. Nothing shows the holes left by loss like the holidays. So if you’re feeling blue this season, it’s understandable. Really.
I’m sure a quick online search will reveal plenty of things you can do to try to change this, but I’ll encourage you just to sit with how you feel instead. Be gentle with yourself and know that it really is okay if you don’t want to decorate or bake or listen to that station that plays carols 24/7.
Listening politely to the excitement of others and thanking them for joyful greetings is a perfectly acceptable response to a season that can feel like a bit much at times. You don’t owe the season and those who are more jolly than you some sort of false equality of enthusiasm. Quiet kindness will suffice.
Take care of yourself this season.