Six Fun Ways to Celebrate the Holidays Social-Distance Style
Although it doesn’t really feel like it, ‘tis the season to be merry. While you won’t likely be attending holiday parties or visiting a ton of friends and family this holiday, that doesn’t mean you have to forego fun.
Try to ignore the downsides caused by the need to social distance, quarantine, and isolate during this crazy 2020 holiday season. Instead, focus on the things you CAN do. Add a few new traditions into your festive mix, get outside for a wintry walk, or snuggle in for a holiday movie marathon. Here are six more easy ways to add fun to your holiday.
Put your all into decorating Since you can’t really go out to celebrate, bring the festivity to you. Light your house Griswold-style, bake a batch of holiday cookies, and hang decorations throughout your own halls – be sure to add scented candles to up the relaxation factor. Once the sun has set, bundle up and head outside with a steaming mug of hot chocolate (topped with marshmallows, of course) or mulled wine to enjoy your hard work.
Boost Your Mood with Exercise – Boost your serotonin levels by adding exercise to your holiday schedule. This feel-good hormone is released when you exercise at all levels. That means heading out for a light jog, walking around the block, or having a dance party with your kids can increase your happiness—and that’s something we could all use when we’re missing hugs from our families. Remember to stretch first, so you don’t pull anything!
A study published in the journal, Sports Medicine, found that participating in aerobic exercise and between 20 to 40 minutes can improve your mood and reduce anxiety for hours after your workout. What are you waiting for?
Be Charitable. The holidays are a perfect chance to give back to your community. And during a year as stressful as this has been, there are a lot of people who could use your help. Whether you choose to donate your time, warm clothes, food, or toys to those in need, being charitable is good for your health. A study published in APA PsychNet, for instance, found that being charitable can help reduce blood pressure and the risk of hypertension in older adults.
Take time to relax. It can be hard to find time for yourself, especially when we’re quarantined with our immediate families (All. The. Time). Take a break from work, chores, and “teacher” duties by having a massage, booking a stretch session or curling up in a bubble bath with a good book. Even 15 alone-time minutes a day is enough to help you feel more at ease and recharged.
Organize a Secret Gift exchange While holiday parties won’t be a thing this year, that doesn’t mean you have to skimp out on fun (or gifts). Organize a gift exchange with a few friends. Set a maximum price (i.e. $10). As the leader, it’s up to you to randomly select each person’s “secret friend” and let them know who you chose. Each person then delivers their gift to their secret friend’s mailbox.
Host a Pandemic Holiday Parade – Decorate your car or make festive signs, drive around town, and spread festive cheer. Whether you sing carols to your neighbors, drop off handmade cards at a senior center, or deliver small gifts to good friends or those in need, there are plenty of ways to share the love with your community this holiday season. And you’ll feel all the better for it. Before heading out, plan your route (be sure to include streets known for boasting epic holiday décor). Don’t forget to pack snacks and hot chocolate!