The greeting cards may tell you otherwise, but friends, the holidays are pretty great time of the year to be single. Other than not having to celebrate with in-laws and spend money on
dude gadgets you’ll just never understand, you’re free to get all dressed up for a holiday party or night out
without knowing who you may meet—it’s quite magical when you think about it. Here are 10 more ways to enjoy the holiday season minus a plus-one this year.

1. Baking, for one

This isn’t as depressing as it sounds—think about all the holiday gingerbread men, the shortbread and sugar cookies that you won’t have to share in an effort to
impress your significant other and their family/friends. You spent Saturday morning rolling up chocolate rum balls, and now, they’re all yours.

2. Tree-trimming with friends

You know what’s fun? Thinking up ways to entice your dear, much-stronger friends to help you pick out the perfect evergreen tree and carry it home. We humbly suggest offering them home-baked cookies (the ones you didn’t have to share earlier) in return.

3. Two words: Holiday. Cocktails.

These candy cane-infused concoctions can be mixed up at home or served at your favourite cocktail bar. Make it interesting by looking up recipes with your favourite festive flavours. Peppermint mocha martini? Sold!

10 steps to the perfect holiday party

4. Festive movie night!

Remember when your ex offered an unsolicited takedown of the Hollywood glamorization of romance in
Love Actually? Well, not this year! Indulge in a rant-free romantic holiday movie marathon night (preferably with company who enjoys romantic holiday movies).

5. Stress-free family dinners

As much fun as the anxiety of bringing home a significant other to holiday dinner is (in a please-just-let-us-get-through-dessert-without-questions-about-our-future sort of way), the only stomach pangs you’ll know this year will be due to itis from that third helping of turkey. And it comes without a serving of
long-term relationship advice on the side.

HOLIDAY PARTY ETIQUETTE 101: How to be a perfect guest—and host

More ways to celebrate the holidays solo this year on the next page…

holiday-single-page-two.jpg6. Vacation time?
Or maybe you’ll decide to skip out on all the family homecoming drama (love you, mom!) entirely and opt for an impromptu trip Cameron Diaz-in-The Holiday-style. Reconnect with a travel buddy you met while backpacking Thailand, visit an old friend living in a new city, or finally take that Roman holiday Audrey Hepburn has been taunting you with. If you need further convincing, remember this sagely piece of self-motivational psychology: Treat. Yo. Self.

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7. Get in your best shape. Ever.

Worse than the Freshman 15 is the reality that women who were dating gained an average of 15 pounds over five years, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the Obesity Society. Pat yourself on the back for being absolved from over-indulging peer pressure, and celebrate with a cinnamon bun. You deserve it.

8. Enjoy spending more—on you.
Since you haven’t been saving up for the perfect holiday gift to give to your significant other, you’re able to splurge on that pair of Dolce and Gabbana studded heels guilt free. Guilt free. Of course, you could contribute a little more to your Secret Santa gift, but that’s entirely your call.

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9. Get the perfect holiday party dress.

Friends, it matters. Every holiday party, every chance encounter under the mistletoe, every invite accepted for holiday cocktails. All of it. Being blissfully single, you never know when you’ll meet your Mr. Right Now. In which case, you’ll need the perfect little black dress to wow him in.

10. Because you’re spending the holidays with a pretty fabulous person already.

For no other reason than getting to spend some quality time feeding, styling and catching up with the one person you didn’t get to spend as much time as you would have liked to this year—you—you deserve to celebrate this year.

Read more:
5 stylish winter date ideas

How to be a perfect guest—and host: Holiday etiquette 101

Relationships: The social etiquette code
Why being "just friends" is a man’s worst nightmare