How I Combat Loneliness in Montana When the Holidays Roll Around
It’s my first Thanksgiving and Christmas in Montana, and I’m missing my family pretty badly.
I always remember to be grateful for my amazing opportunity I have here in Montana. But this year my spouse and I aren't traveling back home for the holidays. It's a dark, gloomy feeling that's looming over my head. And I just want to be honest with you about my life.
I know many people in Billings, and even the entire world, that feel melancholy when holidays arrive too quickly.
That’s why I felt the need to share with you the things I’ve been doing to combat loneliness during the holidays. Some people don’t have family in Montana, or perhaps family has passed away.
Many people reach for alcohol and other substances to ease the pain. Others recluse themselves and may fall into a holiday-depression. No judgement from me. I've done both to help cope.
Let’s explore some healthy ways to cope with the heavy feelings of loneliness during the holidays.
1. Ask a friend to join their gathering.
Some people think this is rude, but if you consider a person to be a friend, then surely they’d be happy to have you join the festivities.
2. Put your phone away at gatherings.
Scrolling Instagram and Facebook could make those lonely feelings inflate even more. Being in the present moment at a gathering brings feelings of connection and happiness.
3. Reach out to people around you.
Yes, it’s busy times with holidays, but usually people will set aside time to chat with you. It doesn’t mean you have to go to their holiday gathering- I’m talking to all my introverts here. But the invite is always appreciated, right? It feels good to be included.
There are all sorts of resources around Billings area that you can lend a helping hand. Getting outside of your body and into giving back could boost you up tremendously.
5. Facetime, Zoom, video chat with far away friends and family.
Technology has helped us stay connected to people we love. It’s not the same as in person gatherings, but it does seem to help with loneliness.
6. Take a walk, exercise, move your body.
Stagnant energy caused by loneliness will settle into the body. Humans tend to embody stress and loneliness which can lead to many health problems. Move that body to disperse the energy around. Play you favorite music whilst doing it.
I'm so happy to attend Michael's family gathering this year. Very grateful for them.
I hope these tips help people who also miss their family, whether people are out of state, or have passed on, or have moved out of their family's life.
To whoever is reading this: I see you, I hear you, I feel you. Hang in there my friend.
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