Loneliness is such a taboo subject and yet so many people around the world experience it, and at Christmas time it can be a particularly hard time for some. Others may not really enjoy the Christmas period and simply choose to be alone, for which this is more about solitude and escaping the hype than experiencing the feeling of loneliness and the emptiness that can bring. If you are one of the above, here are some ideas about how to make the most of the festive period in your own company.
You may have heard a lot about this cosy trend over the past year. Like the German concept of gemutlichkeith and the Dutch idea of gezelligheid, the warm and cosy lifestyle that Hygge promotes has been a key part of Danish culture since the early 1800s when the word first appeared in written language. It’s derived from a Norwegian word for well-being.
Even in the depths of the country coldest months when there is very little daylight Denmark’s’ inhabitants remain the worlds happiest people. Hygge requires consciousness, a certain slowness, and the ability to not just be present – but enjoy the present. You can achieve this cosy feeling by having a candlelit bath, watching the sunrise or sunset, making a delicious meal, curling up in front of the fire with a good book and a glass of wine.
Sometimes we just need a little rejuvenation particularly at the end of the year. The end of the season can be a great time for reflection and self-care. Why not try a little guided-meditation to bring calm to your day?
3. Get Outside
A refreshing winter walk can be good for nourishing the soul. After all that fresh air why not find a cosy fire to curl up in front of with a good book? Lovely!
4. Volunteer for a charity
What could make Christmas feel more meaningful than helping those in need? There are so many brilliant charities that help the homeless over the festive period. Crisis at Christmas is a unique volunteer effort that provides immediate help for homeless people at a critical time of year. By volunteering with Crisis this Christmas you can make a real difference to people experiencing homelessness. Look for a charity in your area as this is just one of many. I have done it before and it was a rewarding and fun way to spend Christmas.
Christmas is also the ideal opportunity to go away and get some me time, on retreat or even on another type of organised holiday if you prefer to be with others or simply book a last-minute trip somewhere random if you prefer your own company. We run New Year Retreats, and they are very popular, and I think that people want to come away for new year for the same reasons as getting away at Christmas. A choice of UK destinations from Wales, Cornwall to Oxford and Sussex, we will be adding more exciting UK destinations for 2018 so watch this space.
Enjoy guided walks, twice daily yoga, our setting intentions workshops, cookery workshops and gorgeous accommodation. You can take a little piece of the retreat home with you and start the new year feeling like your true self rested, rejuvenated and ready to take on the year with a renewed sense of purpose. Have a look here for our new year retreats and beyond
6. Reach out to friends
If you prefer to be around people for Christmas and this is not an option for you, be brave! reach out to work colleagues, other close friends, you never know where this may lead. If nowhere, it’s just lovely to be around those who love and know you.