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Loneliness During Holiday: Coping Strategies for Expatriates in the UAE

Navigating this festive season can present unique obstacles for freshly arrived expats, frequently leading to feelings of loneliness.

The holiday season in the UAE is synonymous with joy and togetherness. However, for newly arrived expatriates, navigating this festive time can pose unique challenges, often leading to feelings of loneliness and isolation.

Insights into Experiences:

Expatriates like Mohamed Amr and Ammer Afaq share their experiences, shedding light on the difficulties of spending festive occasions alone in a new country.

 Mohamed’s quest for suitable New Year’s Eve plans and Ammer’s emotional journey as he forges alone underscores the hurdles those far from familiar settings face.

While embracing new opportunities in Dubai, Najma Swaleh highlights the importance of adapting to combat loneliness. She emphasizes the significance of video calls and engaging in activities like scooter riding and attending festivals to find solace amidst the unfamiliar.

Mental Health Expert’s Advice:

Dr Aida Suhaimi, a Clinical Psychologist, discusses the profound impact of loneliness on mental health during the holiday season. 

She outlines how societal and personal expectations contribute to heightened stress and anxiety. Dr Aida emphasizes the importance of seeking social and emotional support, engaging in self-care practices, and fostering gratitude to alleviate loneliness.

Coping Strategies:

Dr Aida suggests seeking out social connections, participating in support groups, and involving oneself in volunteer work. 

Cultivating gratitude through journaling can foster a positive mindset and alleviate feelings of isolation. She encourages individuals to acknowledge their loneliness and reach out to empathetic individuals for support.

Embracing Resilience:

Despite the challenges, the UAE’s multicultural environment offers avenues for connection and engagement. Expatriates can find solace by exploring new experiences, nurturing relationships, and prioritizing self-care to navigate this season with resilience and hope.

By implementing coping strategies and seeking support, expatriates can turn this potentially lonely time into a period of personal growth and discoveries in their journey abroad.

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