How to have the Christmas you really want in 2022

Christmas! What does that word mean to you?

Ideally, it should bring feelings of warmth and anticipation. Looking forward to celebrating all that is good in life with those that you love the most and enjoy spending time with. Having time to rest, relax and leave the rest of the world behind.

Except, for many of us, Christmas is not like that at all. 

According to YouGov, whilst 67% of people in the UK do like Christmas, 15% actively dislike it, and another 16% are apathetic. Which means that around a third of us do not relish the prospect of Christmas at all. 

For some people this is because they are not interested in religion, which is after all the reason behind the season. Others don’t like all the hype, and some get weary of all the child-focus – adverts and activities etc. And of course, for many people Christmas can be a sad and lonely time if they are on their own or grieving for loved ones.

However, for a lot of people who dread Christmas, none of the above apply. The main downer is the pressure from others – particularly family – to do what they want you to do, so that you are unable to have the Christmas you really want.

But this year why not change all that?

Towards the end of last year we published an article Is it Possible to Escape from Christmas? We explored the fact that many of us feel obliged to spend the time with the same family members or friends that we always do. Just because that’s the way it is – and also we don’t want to offend anyone or let people down.

But in the article we looked at alternative ways you could celebrate Christmas should you choose to do so. For example going away for Christmas, volunteering over Christmas, or even just shutting yourself away at home from everyone and everything. Take a look at Is it Possible to Escape from Christmas? for more details.

The key thing is that you need to decide what you want to do at Christmas. For starters, shut your eyes and visualise your perfect Christmas. Where would you like to be and what would you really like to be doing? 

The good news is that at this stage, there is still time to make your ideal Christmas happen. And also to let everyone know your plans well in advance. So you could make 2022 the year when Christmas is just for you.

The not so good news is that, being realistic, you may need to work out some kind of compromise. If you want to do something different for yourself but also fulfil obligations to family and friends, you will need to find ways through this. 

So here are four suggestions as to how to have the Christmas you really want in 2022, and still end up on good terms with family and friends!

  • Throw a Christmas party at your place

If you either want to go away at Christmas, or want to spend Christmas Day at home rather than sofa surfing with the same relatives as ever, then why not buck the system and host a wonderful Christmas celebration at your place to fit in with that? 

Christmas Day 2022 is on a Sunday, so you could have your party sometime late the week before or early the week after and still be in the Christmas zone: but keep Christmas Day itself just for you.

Make your event really special so that everyone is well looked after and has the best time ever. Then hopefully they won’t miss you too much on Christmas Day itself.

  • Cut short your annual Christmas visit

If you really can’t bring yourself to not visit the usual family on Christmas Day then what you could do is limit expectations as to the length of your visit. For example, if you tend to stay 2 or 3 days, try to reduce that down to 1 or 2 instead and let people know well in advance that this is what you are going to be doing.

Be prepared to make up in quality what you are clawing back in quantity. So really throw yourself into it 110% while you are there. Arrive armed with gifts and goodies, and make sure you are the helpful, cheerful life and soul of the party. That way, even if anyone is a bit miffed that you aren’t staying as long, they will at least remember your many contributions with a smile on their face.

  • Make your Christmas visit into a mini break

Another option that dovetails nicely with the above is to turn the obligatory Christmas family visit into part of a mini break. Is there somewhere else you could go after visiting family? Perhaps other friends who are not too far away, or a cosy cottage or B&B?

Obviously many kinds of holiday accommodation are going to have inflated Christmas rates, but you may still be able to pick up a bargain from private landlords, for example through AirBnB.

Booking some kind of a mini break not only serves as a positive and valid reason why you have to leave a family visit earlier than usual, but can also give you something special to look forward to. Why not make it your own family’s Christmas present to each other?

  • Make New Year the New Christmas

Christmas is a season, right? There’s no law that says everything has to happen on December 25th. So if you really want to do something different for Christmas itself, why not make New Year the New Christmas?

If a group of family or friends normally get together for Christmas and you want to break that pattern, you could suggest an experiment this year. All do something separately for Christmas then have your joint celebration at New Year instead. Definitely worth considering. 

Not only does this give everyone the freedom to try something different for Christmas, but it could also help to resurrect New Year. For many people, New Year has been a bit of a damp squib in recent years. Some of this is due to the Covid-19 pandemic, and events being cancelled. But even before then, there was a growing apathy towards New Year, where staying in became the new going out. 

So by celebrating Christmas at New Year instead you could really liven things up. And the kids will probably love it too as it extends the Christmas spirit – and, of course, present-giving! 

We hope that this article has given you a few ideas as to how to do what you really want to do this Christmas but also keep everyone else happy too.

And if your finances need a boost to help make it all happen, remember that Munzee Loans offer low apr loans that may be able to help.

Check back here soon for more lifestyle and financial tips from Munzee Loans.