First things first is awareness. To be able to manage loneliness, it’s important to recognise that you are lonely. From there, it will be much easier to resolve and move forward from your current situation.
Plan ahead – start to plan before Christmas. If you can’t join your family in person, try arranging a call or FaceTime during the day so you can catch up. Same with any friends who are also alone. If your mental health is preventing you from enjoying the festivities in full, make sure you prioritise your feelings first. If it’s too overwhelming, find some time to take a break away to reduce any stress that could build up.
Talk – talking really does help with managing your feelings. Many people will be going through the same situation as you, and you may not even know it. By telling a family member or a friend how you’re feeling, they can help you with how to cope on Christmas Day and in the long term too. If you’re not wanting to open up to anyone you know, reach out to mental health charities like Mind. Their impartiality and expert knowledge means you can talk to them with no judgement, and they can help refer you to services.
Join in an activity – Christmas can be incredibly draining. So, it maybe worth planning for after Christmas, so you have something to look forward to. Try and find a club relating to any passions you may have. As you’ll have similar interests, it will be easier to chat and make new friends. You can also try volunteering. It maybe scary pushing yourself to meet new people, but it’s a great way to increase your confidence.