Being alone (read: not lonely) is one of the most important things. Whether you’re a housewife, a working lady, a boss or an entrepreneur with almost no time to herself, you need to learn to live happily alone. Solitude or being by yourself, sometimes cannot be avoided because at some point in your life, you will be left alone in your own company and with your own thoughts and as an individual should know how to live with it. In short, it cannot or should not be a challenge to spend time alone when you’re unaccompanied.
Every human being has a different version of happiness when you think about it. For some, it may mean being around a lot of people and finding their peace and for others, it might mean finding peace in solitude. So, solitude? It has its own meaning and honestly, it’s not as sad as some people make it sound. So, before we actually find out how to be happy when you’re alone, you need to know what it is actually to be alone.
You may be at different crossroads in life and at the end of the day, no matter what you do, your happiness matters the most. So, what you really need to know is the fact that you find happiness wherever you go. Even if it’s driving alone or sitting in the corner of your room when everyone else leaves the house.
It’s great to spend time around people. To be able to share what you feel and listen to similar things that people go through in their life too but you know what is better? Spending some time alone. You may not be able to wrap your head around it at first but once you actually get a hang of it, you would want to be alone at least sometime in the day to learn about yourself and to introspect many important things in life.
This comes from personal experience. I was never ever happy being by myself. Today when I look back I know why and how. I was not happy with myself. I was absolutely low on self-confidence and I would constantly badger myself for doing things that I saw other people doing. While I agree this was wrong but it happens to the best of us. But what you really need to know is that in order to spend time by yourself you need to be comfortable with your company and your own skin. A lot of factors add on too which is why we have broken them down into points for you to know about it better.
Just like we said, whether you’re dating someone or married, have babies or pets, it’s important to spend time by yourself. Not just do it as a formality but actually be happy about spending that time alone. When you practice self-love and know what truly makes you happy, you will actually realize how easy it is to be happy alone. Here are a few habits and tricks that will help you in being happy alone.
The first step to being able to be alone and be happy is to actually find comfort in being alone. That comes when you learn to accept yourself for who you are. You need to understand the fact that your clothes don’t make you. Your makeup will wash off but what truly remains is the fact that you love yourself for who you really are. We are all flawed and it’s okay to be.
A lot of times we are not okay with ourselves because we carry a lot of emotional baggage. From the present or the past. And the only way we end up overthinking that baggage is when we spend some time alone. It’s important to make peace with the things that have happened in the past and the present in order to have that peaceful alone time.
You know what is the best that life can offer? The moment that you are in. Know that it is the best that will happen to you. The past and the future cannot be changed which is why it is important to be in the present and enjoy whatever it has to offer to you.
We all have different things that make us happy. Know what makes you really happy. It can be a hobby, a feeling, a song or anything. Do it when you’re alone. This diverts your mind from all the other things and gives you a good feeling about yourself.
The biggest mistake someone can make in their life is to compare themselves with other people. People have their flaws and you have yours. Some may be good at something but maybe only average at what you have aced. People are different and everyone is flawed. You are the best version of you and that is what you should think about. Comparison to other people always makes you feel let down. This happens more when you are alone. Don’t do it to yourself.
You have made some mistakes and so have others. You can’t beat yourself up over things that you have done. If you judge yourself for doing things then what would the world do. In fact, there are too many hard things in the world and everything requires you to be strong in life. If you beat yourself up over things there is nothing you can do to heal. It will be worse when you’re alone. You don’t deserve that.
Silence is golden. Heard people tell you that? If you learn to enjoy silence, you learn to enjoy your own company too. Shut down that music for some time, switch off that phone and enjoy some silence. Listen to the birds chirping, the sound of the wind or your own beating heart. Sounds a bit filmy but enjoying silence is a great way to actually enjoy some great time with yourself.
Sometimes, you don’t listen to people because you have thoughts of your own. It is important to listen to other people’s feedback. It is important to know what they have to tell you. Sometimes, it’s for your better and sometimes it makes you a better person. People who love you will always tell you great things just so you can take them in your stride and be a better person.
Great observers always find reasons to be happy around themselves. It also makes you more aware of your surroundings making you a better person. Observing also makes you self aware which helps you relax. Learn to look at new surroundings in a new and unfamiliar way. This will help you feel more connected to yourself.
Maybe reconnecting with yourself physically will teach you a lot about yourself. A healthy body leads to a healthy mind, remember. It will help you reconnect with yourself when you’re working out. Disconnect with the world for some time and focus on yourself. You don’t necessarily have to join the gym. A simple run with good music will also suffice. You can also start a new form of workouts like yoga or aerobics to not feel bored.
First and the most important thing - being alone does not mean lonely. There comes a time in your life when you want to just focus on yourself and not worry about anyone else in the process. And while all the things in life, from our jobs to our family to everything else, around us are inevitable, you want to take some time and focus on yourself because you can. And you should. Because while other things in life can’t be escaped, you can find a little escape by finding comfort in yourself. At the end of the day, there is no one but yourself who understands you the best.
Being alone and spending time with yourself teaches you a lot. You learn to accept yourself and your flaws and this gives you a boost of confidence. I can say this from personal experience, after a series of mishaps, I put myself in a lot of self-doubts and that, in return, made me not so confident. I would put myself in situations that I did not deserve to be in. After spending time with myself I realised that my flaws make me who I am and unless I accept them, I will not be able to move on to a happier life. Things will come and go in life but the only thing that will take me places is the love I have for myself. That love could only come when I learned so much more about myself by spending time with myself. I accepted my flaws and now nothing or no one can use it against me. It has made me a better person and will make you too!
If you’re wondering what to do alone then you should know that there are many things that one can do alone. You can just take a day out and go to a park and read a book alone. Or even better? Go for a movie alone. Take yourself out on a date. Go to that food joint that you love and order your favourite dish. Order a glass of wine and read or listen to some music. There are so many things that one can do alone and some of these things will make you feel really liberated.
One thing I love to do alone is going for a drive. Whether I am happy or sad, I put on my favourite music and just take off for some time. I don’t prefer taking calls when I am at it and that completely changes my mood for the better.
Someone who dislikes being alone probably has some thoughts and fears that they are still not working on resolving. Help them get over this fear and talk to them. The first step is to help them open up to you. Once they do so, talk to them about things that make you feel good. Get them to admit their flaws and listen. You need to be a good listener. We’re not saying there is something wrong with them for not being able to spend time but maybe there are some things that make them uncomfortable. Be their friend and help them get over this feeling. Maybe they need it. But while you’re in the process, don’t force them to open up. Let them take their own sweet time. Let them be comfortable in talking what you want them to talk about.
Some of the most famous people in the world have gone out and talked about solitude and wanting to spend some time alone. These people have inspired us over the years and have also come too far in life. If they can, we can too! Here’s what they had to say.
JK Rowling on spending time alone and discovering Harry Potter
"I did not have a functioning pen with me, but I do think that this was probably a good thing. I simply sat and thought, for four (delayed train) hours, while all the details bubbled up in my brain, and this scrawny, black-haired, bespectacled boy who didn't know he was a wizard became more and more real to me."
"The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind”
“I want one day of my life for myself, but who do I take it from?”
Feeling great about spending time with yourself reading this, are you?
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This story was updated in January 2019.