Outdoor,photography,coffee, nature, food and culture lover; seeker of life's simple pleasures.
Published December 19th 2016
A special day to do whatever you like, except celebrate
This season you may have a reason for not celebrating Christmas...
In this day and age; it is assumed we all celebrate this ancient tradition, but what happens when you live overseas and have no one to gather with, perhaps your religion or cultural upbringing doesn't celebrate this date, maybe you have simply turned into a Scrooge or a Grinch and hate anything to do with this festive season or perhaps your awareness of the environmental impact, debt,overeating and general massive consumption has got you fed up with anything that glows, jingles or laughs frantically!
Seeing as most places are shut for Christmas and everyone you know may be celebrating this day; you may feel like you will be bored, sad or lonely, well there is a million things you could be doing by yourself on Christmas which don't involve celebrating it, here is a top ten list.
1 Have a party for one: this one goes for those who have no one to celebrate with but still enjoy the season; why not create your own little party for one? take the time to cook an elaborate meal, tidy up the house and bake something, open a bottle of wine and soak your worries in a hot bath or go for a swim at the beach, do some writing or create art, hire your favourite console games or some movies, simply spend time doing your favourite activity and enjoy the solitude of your own company.
2 Go to work: in a lot of countries working Christmas and even the day before or after can mean some big bucks, so why not take the opportunity to go to work? Your bank will feel the love and you can spend the extra cash paying off debt or treating yourself to something special when all the sales come on in January!
3 Give to someone else: if your lack of inspiration to celebrate this day is due to the irony and somehow hipocrecy of it all, take this as an opportunity to give something to someone in need, it may involve volunteering at your local shelter, soup kitchen or foster home, it may be a casual activity such as cleaning the beach or nearby forest, clearing your home to donate items or cooking a meal for a neighbour in need.
4 Enjoy foreign food: a lot of international (Indian, Vietnamese, Nepalese, etc) restaurants in your local area may still be open if the owners don't celebrate Christmas, make a booking and enjoy a meal, you could also expand your knowledge of other countries and their traditions by engaging in a small chat with the owners, waiters or bar staff who may have different beliefs and celebrations.
5 Work up a sweat: 24/ 7 gyms are really popular these days, check which ones will be open and enjoy an evening at an empty gym, all the machines you normally have to wait for or wipe other people's sweat off... are free, if you prefer the outdoors; go for a long hike, swim at the beach, climb a mountain or simply dance by yourself at home! Your body will thank you the extra activity and you won't be regretting stuffing yourself sick in January.
6 Plan a trip: the longest part of travelling is not those long haul flights; it is actually the time it sometimes takes you to: make your mind up, find the time to book it, find the space in your mind and days to plan activities, look up accomodation reviews, tours, how to stay safe etc... so what better time to do this than when everything is shut and you are certain no one will be bothering you with phone calls or work calls! The internet is your best friend here, you don't need to wait for a travel agent to be open, crack a bottle of wine and your favourite take away and finally plan the journey of your dreams! 7 Create something new: the world is your oyster here, take up a new activity and simply do it! try your hand at making jams and preserves,renovate your home, practice break dancing, weave a rug, learn to dance salsa, buy strange ingredients and figure out how to make a dish with them, once again; the internet is your best friend, if you need tuition or instructions to follow simply look up videos, blogs or recipes on your computer, you will start the new year feeling inspired, excited and nourished.
8 Get ahead for the new year: perhaps you are planning a big New Year's Eve party so why not decorate and prepare in advance? if January is looking like a hectic start then prepare for it; cook meals and freeze them, do your taxes, declutter your home,update your CV study for your exams or get a bit of extra work done, do those dreaded tasks or activities which can make your everyday more practical and stress free in the new year.
9 Spend the day with someone else who isn't celebrating: someone you know may not want to celebrate either, go to the movies together or simply spend some quality time with that person, you can rejoice in being Scrooges together and just going to the park for a long walk or gardening together.
10 Simply ignore Christmas and do what you normally do: this day goes by like any other for so many people in the world, you can also do this by simply spending the day like you would any other day, keep in mind some services, stores or call centres may not be open, make contingency plans and ignore the season all together.