How to Be Alone and Treasure Every Second of It
- By: Lauren Bowen
Being alone is often confused with being lonely, but this couldn’t be farther from the truth! Being alone — it’s just a fact. You’re on your own, with no one else around. Lonely, on the other hand, is a feeling. You’re unhappy or discontent because you are alone.
Learning to enjoy spending time alone is a skill — one you can learn and strengthen over time. Sure, you may still feel lonely every once in a while, in the quiet hours after a lovely time with family, after a breakup, in the first weeks after a move; but with a little practice, alone-ness can become synonymous with contentedness — an emotional state we should all be seeking.
Spending time alone, in your own company, gives you time to recharge, identify your feelings, find your voice and improve the quality of relationships that you have with people when you’re with them. Let’s take a look at how we might develop this in ourselves.
ACCEPT THAT THOSE FIRST MOMENTS WILL BE TOUGH.
Many of us live in worlds saturated with communication and media. It’s rare that we have a second to ourselves completely free from the pulls of social media or other people.
Your first quiet moments with yourself will probably feel strange — a bit too quiet, a bit too intrusive — but lean into it! You need to get a little more comfortable being in your own skin.
LISTEN TO YOURSELF.
One of the most rewarding aspects of learning to enjoy one’s own company is rediscovering your thoughts and feelings. Are you feeling cooped up or uneasy? Address this internally. Do you need a little more space? Do you need to declutter?
Are you feeling anger bubble up seemingly out of nowhere? Where is this stemming from? What triggered this feeling? What can you do, now, to address it? Complex feelings arise in the quiet. Let them be and take notice.
LET IT BE FUN!
Alone time doesn’t need to be dull or meditative. Give yourself the space to spend time on solitary activities you enjoy, whether it be reading a mystery novel, plucking out melodies on the guitar or researching a new skill. Sing in the shower. Dance in your PJs! This is your time. Use it how you will!