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Chinese New Year is fast approaching, so does the anticipation of joyous family gatherings, laughter-filled reunions, and the warmth of shared traditions. However, there comes a time when the idea of attending another Chinese New Year gathering may feel overwhelming.
Despite being in Singapore, where the importance of familial and communal bonds is often emphasised, it’s essential to recognise that it’s not wrong to prioritise your well-being and sometimes choose to skip these gatherings. We dive into the reasons why opting out of a Chinese New Year celebration is a valid choice and how embracing self-care can be a powerful act of love toward oneself.
1. Mental and emotional well-being
The pressure to attend social events, even those embedded in cultural significance like Chinese New Year, can take a toll on one’s mental and emotional well-being. For some, large gatherings may trigger anxiety, stress, or feelings of being overwhelmed. Choosing to skip a celebration can be an act of self-compassion, allowing individuals to put their mental health first and create a space for tranquillity rather than succumbing to societal expectations.
2. Personal boundaries
In the hustle and bustle of festive preparations, it’s easy to overlook the importance of personal boundaries. Every individual has a unique threshold for social interactions, and it’s crucial to recognise and respect those limits. Skipping a Chinese New Year gathering can be an assertive step in setting and enforcing personal boundaries. It’s an opportunity to communicate one’s needs openly and establish a balance between festive obligations and personal well-being.
3. Navigating familial expectations
Family expectations can be a significant source of pressure, especially during cultural celebrations. However, we should recognise that each person’s circumstances are unique. Skipping a Chinese New Year gathering doesn’t diminish one’s love or connection to family; instead, it underscores the importance of understanding and respecting individual choices. Communicating openly with family members about one’s decision can foster understanding and strengthen family bonds based on mutual respect.
4. Embracing the beauty of solitude
Solitude is not synonymous with loneliness; instead, it can be a source of renewal and self-discovery. This occasion can offer a rare opportunity for self-reflection, rest, and rejuvenation. It allows individuals to connect with themselves on a deeper level, appreciate their own company, and recharge for the challenges and joys that lie ahead.
5. Physical health considerations
Health is paramount, and there are instances where individuals may not be in the best physical condition to participate in gatherings. Whether dealing with illness, fatigue, or other health concerns, prioritising one’s physical well-being should never be seen as neglecting familial or cultural responsibilities.
Taking the time to rest and recover is an essential aspect of self-care, and opting out of a celebration can be a wise decision for the sake of long-term health.
As such, choosing to skip the annual Chinese New Year gathering is not a wrong or selfish choice. The mental health professionals at A Space Between thoroughly understand this, so they are here to offer a listening ear if you are feeling troubled during this festive period.
Fortunately, finding the right therapist is now easier than ever with our ‘Find A Therapist’ service that pairs you with a practitioner, be it a mental wellness coach, counsellor, or therapist, based on your preferences.