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holiday cheese tray

How to have a happy holiday in COVID times

joy less stress Dec 05, 2020

As we’re in the midst of a holiday season that’s looking pretty different from last year, I want to circle back to a question I’ve asked you before.

What are you looking forward to?

I’m a little familiar with spending the holidays alone or differently than you’d like. I’ve lived 12+ hours away from my immediate family, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins… basically anyone I’m related to, for over a decade.

My family has always done big holidays, so when that first Thanksgiving of being away from home rolled around, I didn’t know what to do with myself.

“I’m just going to treat it like any other Thursday,” I thought.

That didn’t work. As much as I wanted to disconnect and pretend the holiday wasn’t happening, I couldn’t and I felt sad and lonely.

Then I tried to replicate my family’s big Thanksgiving meal (all by myself) and that was an exhausting and not-terribly-enjoyable experience.

Then, I finally decided I was going to design a day I could look forward to:

I was going to make a cheese tray (my favorite part of the feast anyway), buy my favorite wine, and save a book I really wanted to read for Thanksgiving day.

Books + Wine + Cheese = HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO MEL!

So let me rephrase my question to you:

What are you planning that you can look forward to?

 If my cheese example has taught us anything, I think it’s that something doesn’t have to be complicated to be exciting or enticing.

Your holidays might be looking the same this year. Or they might be totally different.

Either way, what are you looking forward to?

If your answer is “nothing,” then it’s up to you to change that. Are some circumstances always going to be outside your control? YES. But you can choose how you respond to them.


Whether it’s holiday-related or not, plan something you can get excited about. It feels good to look forward to a treat. Give yourself that gift.

You’ve got this!



P.S. Unlock Your 5-Star Future, my personalized-to-you course to help you live a more meaningful life, is currently Get One, Gift One Free. (So do that thing we all do and find someone to split the cost with.)

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