If there’s one thing that I’m gonna do, it’s look up some stats. And when it comes to New Year’s Eve and how folks choose to celebrate it, I recently read that around 92 percent of Americans celebrate it, 70 percent at least make plans to stay up well past midnight, 54 percent drink (alcohol) and surprisingly, only 1 in 5 people actually go out to someplace like a bar or club. The reason why I’m sharing all of this (especially that last part) is if there’s a part of you that’s on the fence about staying at home and ringing in the new year by yourself because you secretly wonder if that’s wack or not…it’s not.
Aside from the fact that COVID is still lurking around, there is something about making the decision to stay in to pause, ponder, reflect as you welcome in a new season solo that is surprisingly…refreshing. Just make sure that you take things up a notch from sitting in some ratty old sleepwear, ordering a pizza and watching the rom-com that you’ve already seen a billion times before. Nah, if you’re gonna do New Year’s Eve right, try incorporating at least a handful of these 15 recommendations below.
1. Buy a Blank 2022 Calendar
I’ve shared before that something a husband I know did that I thought was super romantic was he gifted his wife with a calendar that already had dates planned, for the entire year, throughout it (ain’t nothin’ like a man who loves with proactiveness and intention, y’all!). I’ve actually adapted that and “remixed” it a bit. Something that I try and do is plan out things for me to do, for/with myself, on a calendar.
For you, it could be a class that you want to take, a road trip that you want to go on, a concert that you want to see — the list is endless. The point here is to not go into a new year with a “ho-hum” attitude; instead, approach it with excitement about all of the things that you want to do with yourself…for yourself. Things that are already scheduled out on your own 2022 calendar.
2. Get Some Comfy PJs
I’m assuming that a big part of the reason why you are opting to stay in this New Year’s Eve is because you want to take the low-key approach. So, why not get as comfortable as possible? At the same time, a new year should bring new things, so treat yourself to a pair of new pajamas or a really cute onesie. Just because you’re gonna be home, that doesn’t mean that you have to be looking a hot ass mess or that you shouldn’t want to embrace the evening as being special and significant — in your own special way.
3. Update Your Bedding
Personally, I think one of the best things about being home on New Year’s Eve when you’re single (with no kids) is you can go to bed as early as you want and then turn around and sleep in for as long as you want the following day. For me, my bed is already like Six Flags the remix; the only thing that makes it even better is when I change my bedding or when I get some new sheets.
No time like the present to ring in the new year with some flannel ones that will keep you extra toasty or bedding in a color that represents the energy that you want to vibe on for the next several months (check out “Understanding Color Psychology Will Sharpen Your Lens On Life”). What are you waiting for?
4. Partake in Some Patchouli Aromatherapy
I don’t know too many people who don’t strive to be centered and grounded individuals. Well, guess what essential oil actually taps into those very things? Yep, patchouli. It’s also great at soothing dry skin, relieving headaches, decreasing depression and anxiety, reducing cold-related symptoms, and relaxing you. So, whether you decide to mix it with a carrier oil and apply it to your body, sprinkle some on those new sheets that you’re about to buy, or put it into an infuser, the sweetly musky scent of this particular oil can help your health and well-being on a myriad of levels.
5. Write Yourself a “Year in Review” Letter. For the Future.
When you get a chance, also check out “Every Woman Should Write A Love Letter To Themselves”. Something that I think all of us should do, married or not, at least once in our lifetime, is handwrite a love letter — yes, to our own selves. The main reason why is because a lot of us keep feeling slighted by others not giving us the love that we think we deserve when we’re actually being pretty hypocritical for not doing it our damn selves.
Well, along these same lines, a year in review is something that I came up with once upon a time. It’s basically like writing a letter of intent when it comes to how you want the upcoming year to go. In other words, write the letter with the plan of reading it on New Year’s Eve 2022. In it, share all of the great things that you’ve accomplished and how you’ve learned to treat yourself better. This is helpful because one, it will hold you accountable throughout the year when it comes to what you wrote, and two, it can be a lot of fun to see the differences that 12 months can make as it relates to who the person of 2021 was when she wrote it vs. who the person of 2022 is who is actually reading it. Just make sure to put it somewhere you’ll remember to get it from when the time comes.
6. Design a Memories Jar
Along these same lines, go to someplace like Walmart, Target, or a local arts and crafts store and get yourself a mason jar along with some colored construction paper. Then cut the paper into thin strips for the purpose of writing different favorite moments and memories in 2022 that you can put into the jar. The cool thing about this kind of project is it can remind you to get excited about what’s to come. Plus, you can put the pieces into a balloon, come next NYE, pop it at midnight, and read about how great your year actually was!
7. Burn, Baby, BURN
Listen, something that I am all about, a billion times over, is a burning ceremony. Several years ago, someone and I held one in the parking lot of their apartment complex and it was absolutely bomb. We wrote down mistakes that we wanted to stop feeling bad about, relationships we wanted to let go of, habits that we wanted to break, and people we needed to forgive and/or release, then we set them on fire and let the pieces of paper turn into ashes.
While it’s merely a symbolic gesture, there’s something about watching those things go up in flames that is super freeing. (If it’s too cold to go outside to do this, you can always burn the pieces in your kitchen sink.)
8. Watch Teleparty with a Couple of Friends
If you want to spend most of your time alone but you know that you’ve got a couple of other friends who are celebrating NYE by themselves as well, it could be fun to take out a couple of hours to watch a movie with them virtually. One way to do that is to download the Teleparty app (go here). It makes it so much easier for everyone to watch the same programs and movies on Netflix, Disney Plus, Hulu, and HBO from the comfort and convenience of their own home.
9. Order Yourself a “2022” Gift
Yes, you need to be financially responsible. At the same time, you also need to celebrate yourself. So, with the extra coins that you saved by opting out of turning up this NYE, hop on one of your favorite sites and order something online. It doesn’t have to be anything big. Just make sure that, whatever it is, if there is an option to get it as a gift with a note attached, make sure to say “Happy 2022” with your name on it. It’s a token that will remind you to remain in the spirit of appreciating and honoring yourself all year long.
10. Have Your Favorite Meal Delivered to You
You’re probably gonna be hard-pressed to find a ton of eating options after 6 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. Still, who wants to cook (or do any clean-up from cooking) on that night? That said, this is just a gentle nudge to make sure to order something on 12/30 and warm it up the next day or to order food for NYE early in the day so that you can have it before the world shuts down. Me? I’m good for some lamb chops and nothing makes me happier than having them delivered to me from one of my favorite restaurants and then eating them at home while binging A Different World for the billionth time — New Year’s Eve or not.
11. Eat Something Green
Personally, I’m a Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) observer which means that “my” new year has long come and gone. For those who are all about 12/31, though, a tradition from that culture that you can easily apply to your own is to eat foods that are green. The intent is, since green symbolizes things like fertility, prosperity, health, harmony, nature, growth, and wealth, why not “take in” that kind of energy via foods that are that very hue?
The lead pic is fried zucchini (recipe here). Some other green foods that fit the criteria include dark leafy greens, avocados, asparagus, kiwi, Brussels sprouts, Granny Smith apples, and Thompson seedless grapes (frozen grapes that come with a fruit dip are absolutely delicious!).
12. Consider a Going on a Virtual Tour (or to a Virtual Party)
Technology is a trip, ain’t it? If you’re not in the mood to watch a movie or listen to some music, something else that you can do is take a virtual tour. These days, there are sites that will help you to gain access to famous museums, zoos, and aquariums, international spots — you name it. As far as virtual NYE parties go, Time Out featured an article last year with some. Perhaps check back there the week of 12/31 to see if they’ve updated their list.
13. Soak in the Tub
Soaking in the tub can do everything from soothing aching muscles and reducing anxiety to balancing your hormones and improving your quality of sleep. And if ever there was a night that had “tub soak” written all over it, it’s New Year’s Eve. In fact, it’s one night when you can stay in there for literally as long as you want. Although National Bathtub Party Day happened at the top of this month, if you check out “Make 'National Bathtub Party Day' Your Favorite Day Of The Year”, you can get some tips on how to enjoy yourself so much that you might not even notice (or care) when the clock actually strikes midnight.
14. Toast Yourself
Lawd. How many times have I recommended toasting yourself within the copy for this site? That’s because it’s something that I do on a regular basis as a way to remind myself that I am truly worth celebrating! Listen, there are going to be champagne flutes clanking all over this planet at the stroke of midnight. Just because you’re at home, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get in on the fun.
Whether it’s champagne or you decide to go a little off-script and have something like a chocolate martini; Boulevardier, Cider Sidecar; Vanilla Plum Shrub; Champagne Shirley Temple; New Year’s Sparkler; or something else that’s equally as festive, definitely make yourself a drink and verbally declare what needs to be affirmed about yourself. After surviving a year like 2021…chile, you’ve most definitely earned it.
15. Stay Off of Social Media and Your Phone
If a part of the reason why you’re staying home is to enjoy some peace and quiet, what sense does it make to be online all night looking at other people partying, kissing their boo, and getting engaged, only to get your emotions all stirred up? Sometimes, we send ourselves through stress (or triggers) that can easily be avoided by unplugging from mediums of communication with other people. Shoot, even when it comes to the phone if you know that your mom is going to call you to talk about how sad she thinks it is that you are going to be alone for NYE or a friend is going to do nothing but want you to be their impromptu therapist for the evening — it really is OK to let folks know beforehand that for NYE and New Year’s Day, you are going to go totally off of the grid, that you are fine and that things will resume on 12/2.
It’s OK to really want to devote NYE totally to yourself — as a way to release the past and prepare, in your own way, for the present. Happy (Almost) New Year, sis!
Featured image on Getty Images
- How To Spend the Holidays Alone - xoNecole: Women's Interest, Love, Wellness, Beauty ›
- New Year's Eve Outfit Ideas Zodiac Sign Astrology - xoNecole: Women's Interest, Love, Wellness, Beauty ›
After being a regular contributor for about four years and being (eh hem) MIA in 2022, Shellie is back penning for the platform (did you miss her? LOL).
In some ways, nothing has changed and in others, everything has. For now, she'll just say that she's working on the 20th anniversary edition of her first book, she's in school to take life coaching to another level and she's putting together a platform that supports and encourages Black men because she loves them from head to toe.
Other than that, she still works with couples, she's still a doula, she's still not on social media and her email contact (firstname.lastname@example.org) still hasn't changed (neither has her request to contact her ONLY for personal reasons; pitch to the platform if you have story ideas).
Life is a funny thing but if you stay calm, moments can come full circle and this is one of them. No doubt about it.
Take Our 2-Minute Wellness Quiz To Up Your Self-Care Game!
Black women are not a monolith. We all are deserving of healing and wholeness despite what we've been through, how much money we have in the bank, or what we look like. Most importantly, we are enough—even when we are not working, earning, or serving.
Welcome to Black Girl Whole, your space to find the wellness routine that aligns with you! This brand-new marketplace by xoNecole is a safe space for Black women to activate their healing, find the inspiration to rest, and receive reassurance that we are one small act away from finding our happiness.
Want to discover where you are on your wellness journey? You don't have to look far. In partnership with European Wax Center, we're bringing you a customized wellness quiz to help you up your wellness game. Answer our short series of questions to figure out which type of wellness lover you are, what you need to bring more balance into your life, and then go deeper by shopping products geared towards clearing your mind, healing your body, and soothing your spirit.
Ready to get whole? Take our quiz now!
Everything Kerry Washington Has Said About Her Husband Nnamdi Asomugha
Actress Kerry Washington and her relationship with her husband, actor Nnamdi Asomugha, is the perfect example of a winning team.
The pair became an item following a chance encounter in 2009, and many years later, on June 24, 2013, Washington and Asomugha would secretly tie the knot. Since then, the high-profile couple has expanded their blended family by welcoming two children, a daughter Isabelle Asomugha, 8, and a 6-year-old son Caleb Asomugha. Asomugha also has a daughter from a previous relationship.
Despite Washington and Asomugha choosing to live a relatively private life for the most part by not sharing images of their family on social media and occasionally attending events together. The rare glimpses they provide to the public showcase that Washington and Asomugha have much in common regarding essential topics.
For example, Washington is highly involved in politics and encourages others to participate by spreading information about various issues and how everyone would be affected.
As for Asomugha, the 41-year-old officially founded the Asomugha Foundation in 2010, years after doing other charity work in Nigeria. According to its site, the organization was created to help "disadvantaged youth and women by providing educational opportunities and mentorship."
Washington's public remarks regarding her relationship with Asomugha and their family may be rare, but when she does speak about their family, it's all positive.
Kerry On Why She Keeps Her Relationship Private
Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Bronx Children's Museum
In March 2016, the UnPrisioned actress revealed during a discussion panel at SXSW Festival that one of the reasons why she is adamant about remaining private about her union with Asomugha is because she doesn't want the public to make any narratives regarding her marriage.
At the time, it was reported that Washington and the former NFL player were experiencing marital troubles and were allegedly planning on getting a divorce. Washington would shut down those allegations by saying she hasn't and will not share any information about her private life.
"Social media has actually been great for [other celebrities'] relationships with the weeklies or the gossip sites because people say things and they say, 'That's not true!' So I'm thinking in some ways, it's been great because people are able to maintain their voice," she explained.
"It's a little different for me because I don't talk about my personal life. That means not only did I not tell you when I was getting married, it also means if somebody has rumors about what's going on in my marriage, I don't refute them, because I don't talk about my personal life."
Kerry On How She Met Nnamdi And What A Normal Day Looks Like for Their Family
Fast forward to October 2018, the Scandal star gave insight into how she met Asomugha and their family life. During an interview with Marie Claire, Washington shared that she and Asomugha met in 2009 while she was working on the Broadway play Race.
The mother of two told the publication that her life has "completely transformed" since their encounter. "The last time I did theater, it completely transformed my life. That's where I met my husband. I love being with my family. My days off look like homework, reading, and watching stuff. Just hanging out, doing things we love to do," she stated.
Kerry On Nnamdi's Accomplishment
Photo by Jeffrey Camarati/Getty Images
But as time progressed, Washington began speaking a little more openly about her man. In October 2022, Washington gushed over Asomugha and his Netflix project, The Good Nurse, which came out around the same time her film, The School for Good and Evil, was released. While talking to Entertainment Tonight, the star expressed how "proud" she was of her husband.
"I'm really proud of him, I think he's doing amazing work. I'm really excited for his film, The Good Nurse," she said. "It's really exciting to both have really important films at Netflix right now, we feel really blessed.”
Kerry On Why Nnamdi Is Her Soulmate
Washington shared how her love with Asomugha goes beyond the surface after spending over a decade together.
In a March 2023 interview with Marie Claire, Washington explained that she and Asomugha are perfectly aligned because she's allowed to be her authentic self with him.
"I'm in my immediate truth with [him]," Washington said. "Those mirrors are important because they help me get back to myself."
Kerry On The Couple's Upcoming 10-Year Wedding Anniversary
Photo by Bruce Glikas/Getty Images
That same month, Washington expressed that in addition to the many years the couple has been together, and their personal and professional accomplishments, she still finds Asomugha "incredible."
Washington shared this revelation while promoting her latest project, UnPrisioned, in an Entertainment Tonight interview.
"I do have an incredible husband," the actress told ET host Kevin Frazier as she disclosed little to no details about their upcoming plans for their tenth wedding anniversary. "Do you remember how secret my wedding was? How private and secretive it was? That's how the anniversary is gonna be too!"
Kerry On Why She Thinks Nnamdi And Their Children Are A Gift From God
Washington's love and admiration for Asomugha and their family grow increasingly each day, so much so that she uses it as inspiration to share positive messages with her fans.
The 46-year-old revealed during a panel with Al Sharpton at National Action Network Convention on April 12 that she sees her husband and their children as "proof" that God exists and loves her because of the great joy they bring to her life.
"Well, you've met my husband, my husband's amazing. I got a good one. We have three beautiful children. And I think, you know, when I look at my marriage, and I look at my kids, fundamentally, they are proof of God to me,” she said. "Because I know that God loves me to have put those people in my life. And that sense of like, knowing that God loves me. That, to me, is so much of how I make the decisions about the activism that I do and the content that I make."
Regardless of what the public may think about Washington and Asomugha's private union, they are proving with each moment that love can conquer all.
Let’s make things inbox official! Sign up for the xoNecole newsletter for daily love, wellness, career, and exclusive content delivered straight to your inbox.
Feature image by Arturo Holmes/MG23/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue