Woman looking through a rainy window with a Santa hat on

Coping with Loneliness During the Holidays

Keeping Your Holidays Holly and Jolly

The holiday season is here, and while you may be surrounded by people who are feeling extra merry and bright, you may not be feeling those same emotions. Holidays can be full of love and cheer, but they can also stir up feelings of anxiety, depression, and loneliness. In fact, it is common and normal to feel this way.

As the world continues to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, these feelings may even be more heightened than usual. Between negative emotions and various triggers that surround the holidays, the “most wonderful time of year” may actually be quite the opposite. Feelings of stress, depression, and loneliness, as well as holiday triggers, can increase your risk for relapse.

Here are some ways to help you cope with loneliness and get you to dance and prance through the holiday season:

Confide in Someone You Trust

One of the most important ways to combat any negative feelings is to express them healthily. Whether you speak to a mental health professional, a good friend, or a family member, telling someone how you are feeling approaching the holidays is critical. Talking about your emotions can be challenging but will ultimately help you process them and prevent them from building up and getting worse in the future. Being in touch with your emotions increases your self-awareness and overall allows you to heal throughout time. If you can communicate your feelings to others, they can help meet your needs.

Make Plans with Someone You Love

Feeling lonely does not necessarily mean you are alone. Spending time with someone you love will help combat those feelings and remind you that you have a strong support system rooting for your success and happiness. You may feel that it is difficult to make plans while you aren’t feeling your cheeriest, but initiating plans to do something you love with someone you love can be pivotal to getting through the season. Whether you ask a family member to grab coffee with you or a friend to go on a walk, getting out of your comfort zone and enjoying an activity will combat feelings of loneliness and increase happiness.

Avoid Social Media

Social media can be a great networking device and way to connect and talk with individuals. However, if you notice yourself feeling glum every time you open your favorite app, it may be wise to temporarily remove the apps until the holidays have passed. It is easy to compare yourself and your situation to other people on the internet, lowering your self-esteem and increasing your already negative feelings. Try your hardest to be present in each moment and put your phone down as much as you can.

Try a New Hobby

Impress your friends and family members by trying a new hobby or pursuing one you have always had an interest in. Various non-profit organizations need assistance around the holidays, so volunteering your time to help others will feel extremely rewarding and combat any feelings of loneliness. The holiday season is also a fantastic time to go through your home and donate any items or pieces of clothing you may not use anymore. Donating these items will help both you and someone in need. You can also try new recipes, learn a new language, or take online classes to study a new subject. There are plenty of options to try new things that will help you enjoy the holidays.

Treating Addiction at Chattanooga Recovery Center

At Chattanooga Recovery Center, we understand that drug and alcohol addiction is often intertwined with mental illness. Because the two are so closely tied together, our facility offers comprehensive mental health treatment in addition to our alcohol and drug programs.

We are proud to offer a variety of specialized dual diagnosis treatment plans to serve residents in need throughout Tennessee.

Call (423) 226-5331 or contact us online to learn more about our holistic approach to addiction and mental health treatment today.


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