All the single ladies -- All the single ladies -- All the single ladies -- All the single ladies -- As single ladies, don't we love those lyrics? Well, maybe not so much when it's all-the-single-ladies-during-the-holidays! Now stop that thinking this instant! As the founder and creator of Wakeuptoabreakup.com, an online destination for gals who are "in-between" boyfriends, I'm here to represent all the single ladies! (Especially the over 40, single-moms-with-kids variety).
I'll admit, many people believe that being single during the holidays is tough for us single gals. Why? Because we have to attend parties alone and endure family get-togethers where the first question out of nosy Aunt Evy's mouth is, "So, how's your love life?" And if our love life is currently in remission, we must endure looks of pity from relatives who aren't necessarily happily married themselves, but that doesn't matter because they're a couple dammit!
Don't despair! 'Tis the season to be jolly -- really, it is. Here are my annual inspirational tips to help the single ladies find their HO, HO, HO during the holidays...
• Take pictures of unhappy bickering couples, frame them all around your house to make yourself feel better about being single!
• When weird cousin Fred says, "I'm so glad I'm married and I don't have to date anymore; don't you just hate it?" Start talking about your amaaaaazing six cats and how you're planning to adopt more in the new year. Do you really care what weird cousin Fred thinks about you?
• Reframe the situation -- is being alone for the holidays really a problem? Think about it -- no in-laws, no boyfriends or husbands to argue with, no weird cousin Freds. It sounds like a dream.
All kidding aside, here are some tips to get through the holidays with a big smile on your face...
• Throw your own party. I did this last year and it was empowering. Invite people who are fun and will embrace your single status, not pity it. A party signals that you're ready for a festive holiday season, and it will stimulate invitations back at you. Throwing a party is what we encourage our gals to do -- that is, choose to make your life so juicy and joyful that it rocks with or without a partner. Besides, when you're putting out this kind of positive energy, it makes you more attractive to potential suitors.
• If you're going to a family celebration, buy everyone really fun, weird gifts this year. Insist that they try them immediately -- Tap shoes for mom, a Jesus costume for dad, mustaches all around for the babies! Laugh, enjoy, take pictures to memorialize the hilarity!
• If you can't bear the idea of a family get-together, take a trip. Single moms often have a week off as the kids go with the dad for half the vacation and vice versa. This is the perfect time to hop on a plane and invest in your own well-being. One of the best parts of singledom is that you can just pick up and go! Or pretend you're a tourist in your own town. I love having dinner alone in bars of nice hotels. Have you ever noticed that when you're alone, you meet the most interesting people?
• Be selfish. Do things that bring joy and humor into your life. Rent funny movies, decorate your home with things you love, take a pole dancing class, learn to meditate, cook or don't cook and order in, have dinner at the bar at a great restaurant, buy yourself a gift or send yourself a funny card. There are a couple of great retreats in the Berkshires called The Omega Institute and Kriapala. Both places are fantastic for singles as they're all about exercise, pampering yourself, indulging and personal growth.
• Make yourself go out, whether it's to a party or your niece's Christmas play. Go with the knowledge that you can leave anytime you want. While there, flirt. Or don't flirt. Dial it up. Or dial it down. You aren't beholden to anyone. Focus on your best qualities -- your smile, your willingness to share, your healthy body, your sense of adventure. The second you are ready to leave -- BOLT! Then congratulate yourself for going out and making an effort.
• It's been said, but is worth saying again -- take some time that you would spend with a boyfriend and visit folks at a local nursing home, serve a meal at a homeless shelter, or volunteer in a way that feels good to you. That's what the holidays are all about, right?
So... what do you say to Aunt Evy when she asks, "How's your love life?" Here are some of our favorite responses on our Twitter that you might try:
• I joined Scientology and I'm No. 3 on the waiting list to audition for the part of Tom Cruise's wife so I'm not dating right now.
• I'm in "relationship transition."
• I am so focused on my career right now, dating is taking second place. Let me tell you about my career...
• There are men everywhere and I am loving being single. It's like a whole new lease on life. You should try it.
• I don't know, how's your love life? Better yet, how's your sex life?