How to Enjoy the Holidays Away From Home

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Between the gift swaps and cookie exchanges, the potlucks and parties, the holidays are all about spending time with family and friends. Take away the glitz and glam of the season and you’re left with the makings of a good ol’ celebration: food, drink, music and company. We tend not to remember the number of presents under the tree, but rather the time mom nearly set the kitchen on fire making Christmas dinner, or the snow day spent building a family of snowmen with the kids down the street. It’s the simple, shared moments that ring true year after year. And why fighting the holiday blues can be so hard.  

While there are two main reasons for experiencing the holiday blues: change in location and change in tradition; a break from the norm is also a common factor. Whether far from home because of school, work or travel, buying and baking solo just isn’t the same. While the chance to press pause on the annual hustle and bustle might first bring relief and relaxation, the feeling soon becomes boredom. For those celebrating in a new (or different) way this time around, there is a need for adjustment. Whether welcoming new family members to the table or expecting St. Nick to pick up on the change in address, there is a silent longing for the same old.

Regardless of the circumstance, here are a few ways to fight the blues.

Communication is key

If distance is getting in the way of an extra jingle or two, stay connected with family and friends – traditionally and digitally. With either the lick of a stamp or the touch of a button (preferably both), send best wishes and lots of love. It may feel like a thing of the past, but all of us still secretly love receiving snail mail. And these days, social media and screen time can connect all of the best holiday happenings: eating, decorating and unwrapping holiday joy.

Drop the beat

Create and share the ultimate holiday playlist with friends and family. Include all of the must-have Christmas carols, too-good-to-miss covers and of course, a seasonal song by Michael Bublé. If you feel like a go-getter, create a personal playlist for each family member and close friend. And don’t forget to throw it all the way back.

Keep an open mind (and tummy)

While many families and festivities are rooted in tradition, it’s important to keep an open mind. There is usually a reason for introducing or experiencing change — and it’s almost always for the greater good. Make a point to embrace your surroundings and mix the old with the new. For instance, craving one (or two, or three) of your grandma’s favorite homemade holiday treats? Do some research, find the recipe and start a new tradition with an old list of ingredients. Or, maybe you’re missing out on the usual cold winter chill and heavy snowfall? Trade in boots for flip-flops, shovels for sprinklers, snow angels for sand angels and get used to seeing sun in December.

What are some other ways you fight the holiday blues when away from loved ones? Share them with us online by tagging @BeMakeful