Completely Underrated: Alone Time
When was the last time you took some time for yourself?
It seems to me that people today don’t appreciate the wonders of alone time. Simple, quiet time to yourself spent reading, watching a movie, meditating, eating, or contemplating. Personally I can never seem to get enough alone time, and having my own personal space to do my own thing is critical to my happiness. But in a culture obsessed with partying and spending every waking minute keeping busy, I think people forget to take some time for themselves. Why is staying home on a Friday night a bad thing? Just because someone is spending a quiet evening by themselves does not make them sad or inept or antisocial.
Sometimes I actually cancel plans simply because I don’t want to go out; I don’t want to deal with people. Sometimes I much prefer staying in doing something I enjoy rather than going out for a night on the town, and I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. In fact, I think it’s a healthy attitude. I wish people would spend more time getting to know themselves and pursuing their solo interests rather than getting drunk every at every opportune moment. People can’t seem to tolerate being alone with themselves, which is a grave misfortune. We as a society are terrified of the prospect of being alone.The best company available to you is your own – you don’t have to worry about saying or doing the right things, impressing others, or looking a certain way. You have no one to impress, so just enjoy.
Sometimes you just have to take the phone off the hook and work through things - issues you’ve been avoiding thinking about, something that happened recently that’s bugging you. Devote some time to think about your life at this very moment – how have you been feeling lately? Are you happy with the way things are going? If not, is there something you could change? Life is lived forward but understood backward. Gain some perspective. Most people don’t understand themselves or know who they are or what they want or why they do what they do. This creates a vicious cycle of mistakes and regrets that are committed again and again because there is no thought given to them. Devote some time to you, and you will reap the benefits.
It’s also essential to enjoy your own company. Make a day out of it, even. Need some ideas? Get all dressed up, knowing that no one else will see. Cook yourself a scrumptious dinner and enjoy it by candlelight. Read a novel with a hot beverage or settle down to watch a favourite movie. Write. Create. Work on a hobby of yours. Dance like no one’s watching, because no one is watching. Sing at the top of your lungs. Take a nice long bubble bath. Paint your nails. Work out. Try something new – a new recipe, a new makeup look, a new perfume.
As Buddha once said,
“You can search throughout the entire universe for someone who is more deserving of your love and affection than you are yourself, and that person is not to be found anywhere. You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.”
So don’t be afraid of who you are. Don’t be afraid to love yourself.
I don’t care who you are or where you’ve been or what you have to do. Find a quiet space, and be alone. Entertain and nourish yourself. Be happy. Take deep breaths. Relax.
And repeat. Frequently.