By Liz Lampkin, Crosswalk.com
Tis' the season to be thankful, jolly, and cuffed? The winter months bring many reasons to have fun, celebrate, and get active with family, friends, and other loved ones. While many people focus on holiday celebrations, others may be focused on cuddling up with a newfound love. Yes, cuffing season has arrived, and many singles are actively seeking to get cuffed this season for different reasons. Some may want short-term companionship for holiday gatherings, while others seek long-term companionship. Whatever the reason, many singles are on the prowl during the colder months to avoid being alone during this time of the year when depression and loneliness are typically at an all-time high. While many singles successfully get "cuffed" during this time, others don't. This can bring about feelings of isolation or unworthiness for some singles and make them believe that love doesn't exist for them. However, we all know that this isn't true and that the designated cuffing season may not be the time when God decides to send the one their heart desires or the one they need for that moment in their life. So, if you're single and need to know how to navigate through the cuffing season this year, take a look at the list below.
1. Understand what and why you desire a relationship during this time of the year.
Many singles desire a relationship during the winter months because of the change in weather, holiday celebrations where couples seem to flourish, family gatherings that can bring about unmerited questions about your relationship status, and let's not forget a famous favorite: matching pajama pictures all over social media. While these and other factors may heighten the need for single desires for a relationship, it's important to clearly understand what you desire, why you desire it, and how your life may change when you have the relationship you wanted or thought you wanted. Before you set your heart on getting cuffed during this time of the year, check in with your emotions to see where you are and if an intimate relationship is what you truly need and desire. You don't want to put yourself in a long or short-term situation that may not provide what you need simply because you desire human contact and connection. Any relationship you desire should make you a better person from every aspect of your life in and out of cuffing season, but you want to be clear on what you need so that it can serve a positive purpose in your life.
2. Know your worth.
Cuffing seasons come and go. You don't have to rush into any type of relationship to feel better about yourself during this time of the year, only for it to possibly be a short-term romance. Take time to think about who you really are and what you truly deserve, and know what you don't want in a relationship. Never settle for less than what you deserve, no matter what season of life you are in.
3. Understand that there are more things to cuddle up with other than the opposite sex.
A good book, roasting marshmallows on an open fire, a warm blanket, cozy pajamas, and socks, making your favorite comfort foods. These are just a few things you can snuggle up with this cuffing season, and you won't be disappointed or have to schedule time with. While none of these things can provide the same connection as cuddling up with a warm body can provide, you can still receive comfort from any of them at any time you desire. Seek alternatives that will make your heart smile and bring joy to your soul during this cuffing season. This way, you'll know what your heart desires when someone is around and when they're not.
4. Understand your needs during this season.
You don't want to mistake loneliness during cuffing season for seasonal depression. If you notice a shift in your mood during the winter months, it may not be due to the lack of companionship, but it may be because of seasonal depression. While everyone needs positive human contact, it's important to understand your needs during this time of the year. So, before you delve into a cuffing season situation, ensure you have assessed your needs outside of your desires for a relationship.
5. Wrap up and get active!
Find some winter activities to become involved in. Believe it or not, there are many indoor and outdoor activities to engage in during the winter months; you've just gotta go out and find them! Take some time to plan a monthly activity you want to participate in during this season. Make sure it's something you've never done before that you can turn into a tradition for yourself. Whether it's taking a short trip, planning a staycation, taking in a few holiday movies, or taking holiday baking classes, plan winter activities that can give you a brand new outlook on this season and yourself.
6. Get out and connect with long-lost loved ones, make new friends, or arrange dates with familiar ones.
This season is about more than being cuffed into a romantic relationship. It's about reconnecting with people you've lost touch with and making new connections that are good for your soul. If you haven't already done so, begin making plans with people who bring out the best in you and remind you that you are not alone this season or any other season.
7. Volunteer your time.
If you need another activity to spend your time, find a few shelters, schools, or churches where you can volunteer. Nothing beats the blues or feelings of loneliness than using your time to help someone in need.
8. Cuff yourself!
Learn to enjoy your own company. There's nothing better than spending quality time with the best person you know, yourself. Plan outings for yourself, by yourself, and discover something new about who you are and what you like to do. Doing this will help you know and understand the things you like so that when it is your time to get "cuffed," you can introduce your mate to the things that interest you.
9. Be clear about cuffing season possibilities.
Short-term and long-term. If you are actively seeking to cuff or be cuffed, you need to know and understand that there is a possibility that things may or may not work out the way you want. Many people are seeking companionship during this time of the year for various reasons, and you want to be sure that you are clear on what you want and be okay with varying outcomes. If you are actively seeking to get cuffed, be aware of what you desire and go into this season carefully with a clear mind and a clear heart. Remember, you're not the only person who desires companionship, and you don't want to get hurt or hurt someone else in the process.
10. Enjoy the season for everything it represents!
The fall and winter months represent change, thankfulness, giving back, and starting over. Take some time each day this season to indulge in everything this season brings. Don't spend your time focusing on having a new or rekindled romantic relationship, but spend this season enjoying life for everything it has to offer.
While the desire for deep, natural love is heightened during this time of the year, it shouldn't stop singles from enjoying all it represents. Cuffing season is filled with ups and downs, high hopes and lows. Any season can be difficult for singles who may struggle with loneliness. Still, if you remain prayerful and active, hopefully, pretty soon, cuffing season will be a distant memory for you and your loved one.
Author Liz Lampkin is an experienced writer, teacher, and speaker. She is an advocate for singles who encourages them to live their best life God’s way. Follow her on Instagram @Liz_Lampkin.