New Year’s traditions vary across the world, but many mark the passing of one year to the next with gatherings of friends, family and even strangers at various events or parties – with fireworks, countdowns, music, street parties and so forth, all making their way into usual New Year’s celebrations. However, as COVID-19 has caused much of the world to put in place safety and socialisation restrictions, raucous parties have been scratched off the schedules for many areas. Whether you would normally go out, but this year you are spending a quiet New Years at home, or if you happily see in the New Year in from the comfort of your home, it need not be uneventful. Many of us, no doubt will be looking forward to putting the struggles of 2020 behind us, and moving into a new, hopefully more prosperous year. Therefore, making the most of New Year’s, may simply be a welcome ritual in whatever way you chose to spend it.
Speaking to Huffington Post, British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) therapist, Sally Brown, said that a quiet New Year’s: “…could actually be a bit of a relief if you’ve always slightly dreaded NYE, but also not wanted to miss out. If everyone is staying in, there’s no FOMO. Not being able to go out is harder on extroverts, though – and people who live alone.”
Review Your Year
After such a year as 2020, there may be a temptation to simply write the whole year off, ignore New Year’s altogether and look to a better 2021. If that is your stance, great, see the new year in, in a way that best suits you. However, after such as year as 2020, it may be nice to consider all the things you are lucky and grateful for. Take some time, on your own or with family and friends, to write down or voice anything good that has come out of 2020, or anything that you are grateful for or lucky to have. You can do this in a number of ways, by making a scrapbook, memory jar or lighting candles.
After a year where so many have lost so much, focusing on what you have, can shift your perspective to a happier one ever so slightly. If it is hard to consider what you are thankful for after a devastating year, perhaps try to imagine what you will be grateful for when things return to normal. Consider what you want to enjoy, achieve or experience once things are back to normal.
We may not be able to see as many friends and family as we would like, but if you can virtually connect to loved ones. This may be a nice way to mark the year. Whether you simply catch up, hold a ‘virtual’ dinner together or even play some games over video chat. Whether a quiz, or classic group games such as charades, Pictionary and so forth. You can organise your own night, or there are plenty of free online games for this very purpose.
Make it simple on yourself and just see the New Year in, in a relaxing, stress free manor. Whether this is doing something just for you, such as taking a bath, getting lost in good book, playing video games, watching a good film, taking on a creative project, , or even going to bed early; or spending the night with one or two loved ones – cook a nice meal, play some board games, or spend some time reviewing the year and sharing your New Year’s resolutions (if you have any). After the turmoil and stress of 2020, making New Year’s relaxing and low key, may be the perfect remedy to such a year.
If your area allows you to host a small number of people safely, or you can celebrate with your immediate household, then you may like to celebrate the New Year with a ‘mini party.’ Gather together your household, add snacks, drinks, music, decorations and countdown into the new year together. You could also have a nice sit-down meal, play party games and dance into the new year in your own living room.
However, due to social distancing restrictions and the continuation of the COVID-19 pandemic, ensure you keep yourself and other safe, by rigorously following social distancing guidelines – wearing a mask, avoid touching your face, wearing a mask, keeping a social distance and avoiding large gatherings. If you are unwell, do not host or attend a gathering.