I had a realization lately. In English, there are two words to describe “being alone”, that is to say:
- being alone
- being lonely
In French, we do not have this, as “being alone” is simply “être seul”. I find it beautiful that English offers that difference, because if the first one describes a state, the second stands for a feeling: loneliness. In today’s post, I would love to dive into ways for you to live one without suffering the other. For the little personal story, I found out after my breakup that, this time, I was feeling able to stand, and even love, my alone time. Thus, I have wondered: what is different from when, in my life, I have felt so insecure about being alone? Here is what I found, and what you can do to feel better in your own company.
We all feel lonely at times: accept it
The first tip is nothing fancy, really: accept loneliness. When the feeling hits, just dive into it. It is the same thing as when there is a fight in a couple, or when your friend annoys you: you accept it. Here, you are facing the problem that goes with being alone: loneliness. All states of the cycle of social relationships have their downside, and alone time has loneliness. Keep in mind that it all has its own downside, and that coping with loneliness is just part of the cycle, as fighting with a partner is at times. It is not better, it is not worse. It will just pass, and it passes surprisingly fast if you come to do the other things on this list.
Have activities just for you
It is important you engage in activities: being alone does not mean doing nothing all the time. There are so many things you can do on your own: read, travel, learn a language, play anything online (OK, not alone but quite alone still): you may just choose or even try it all. The most important here is just to realize how full you are on yourself, and how much you can do just in your company. If other people’s presence is enjoyable, it is very rarely necessary to enjoy activities. Also: being alone and enjoying a hobby is usually the best way to meet like-minded people.
Learn to spend time in nothingness
I know it is hard, and I am not telling you to do nothing when alone (quite the contrary given the other points of this list), but spending time in nothingness is really powerful. This allows you to dive deep into your past, future, hopes and every thought crossing your mind in-between. It also allows you to benefit from the power of silence, and to restore your power by enjoying the emptiness. I find that this is the best tool to see whether you feel comfortable on your own, for your own sake: nobody to worry about, and nothing to do. Just you and nothing else.
Go on dates with yourself
This one may be extremely hard for those lacking self-confidence, but you know what? Being single is the best moment to gain self-confidence. No, I am not saying you can’t be confident in a relationship, but I must say that it is always easier for me to find my deep confidence when single. Whatever you do is just “your problem” and nobody else has a thing to say. Of course, this should always remain like this, but it is not always the case. Thus, use this time to do what you please and bring yourself on dates (movies, theatre, galleries, restaurants: you name it!). It is your time to show yourself love and deep respect: worship it.
Use this time to figure out what relationships you want – Make it count.
Life is often a matter of cycles and changes. If you are alone today, whether it means being single, feeling isolated from friendships, or having lost someone you love (or absolutely anything else: what you go through will always be valid), this does not mean it will last forever.
When you enter a romantic relationship, for instance, I bet you spend time figuring out how you can enjoy the other’s company to the fullest and show your best to them. Thus, why don’t you do exactly the same when you are single? The same goes for each type of relationship: your company is something to be valued.
Spending time alone is a way for you to do two essential things:
- learn to love yourself and get to establish your worth in your own eyes,
- reflect on what a relationship with anyone may bring you.
Too often, we enter relationships (romantic or not) to feel less lonely, but the truth is that in my eyes, there is nothing worse than being with someone who actually makes you feel lonely. Thus, it might be the time to let your alone time count, and decide what type of relationships you want for the next “social phase” of your life cycle.
I do hope this post somehow helped you. I always do my best to help you through whatever I am experiencing right now and at that stage, here is what I am learning. Furthermore, I am so happy if this can benefit any of you, and I look forward to sharing more thoughts with you in the near future.