In this chaotic lifestyle of the 21st century, where you’re crazily surrounded by social media, friends, family, and TV shows, it’s challenging to be alone and reflect on your inner feelings. When you listen to least yourself and tirelessly get involved with people and work, you create distance between you and your soul. Once you get too prone to be with people, it gets tough to enjoy your own company and understand the person that you spend every minute of your life with, I.E., yourself. Therefore, it’s critical to find out how to be okay being alone.
Difference between being alone and lonely
Let’s first figure out the difference between being alone and lonely. Extroverts prefer to be among social meetups and naturally seek the company of people. They like to have a strong social network. Contrary to it, introverts like to be alone and try to avoid excessive social networking. They naturally want silence and isolation. But for both of them, being alone is good, and loneliness can cause a lot of health and psychological issues.
Loneliness is the emotional state where you feel disconnected from others, and no one is interested to know what’s going on in your life. You sense that you don’t have friends who want to know what’s happening with you, and no one will come and extend support or lend a hand.
Loneliness is even possible if you’re among people and spend most of the time in the company of others. Since it’s an emotional state, it has nothing to do with your physical presence among the crowd. That’s why it’s important to understand how to be okay being alone and avoid loneliness. This is specifically crucial for extroverts because they can be lonely despite being constantly surrounded by people, leading to numerous health and emotional problems.
Switching to the concept of being alone, it’s physical isolation. Being alone means that you’re spending time without the presence of anyone and have a strong sense that people in your life care about you and you’re deeply connected with them on social and emotional levels. You’re just physical alone.
This is particularly vital for introverts because when they spend time in isolation, they shouldn’t feel that They’re lonely and disconnected emotionally from others.
Humans are social creatures, so regardless of whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, the sense of connection and emotional attachment with other fellows are important for a happier and more peaceful life. Thus, always try to be alone in a few instances but don’t get lonely at any moment.
Benefits of being alone
Alone time is pretty helpful for self-exploration, self-awareness, and regaining confidence and recollecting thoughts. If something is annoying you, or things aren’t going in your favor, you need to go to a solitary place and ponder over them. By the end of it, you’ll have better self-awareness, solutions, and a plan of action. Consequently, you’ll overcome challenges and bring out a fresh perspective on the situation.
In addition, alone time makes you creative and helps you to develop new skills. Various studies have underlined that creative people like to be alone to work on their ideas without the fear of being judged. In a solitary place, you can do whatever you love doing, and no one can object or interfere. Resultantly, you develop new skills.
For instance, you like cooking or painting or want to dance, you can do it being alone, and no one will be there to judge you. After a few weeks, you’ll get to know that you’ve become excellent at the thing that you love doing most in life. Alone time makes it possible this.
Spending time with yourself also regains social energy, which is essential to being a good team player and a likable person in gatherings and social meetups. In his book “Going Solo,” sociologist Eric Klineberg notes that people with alone time have richer social lives. Therefore, if you believe that you have difficulty meeting friends and family, putting yourself in isolation is a good idea to come back with higher social energy.
Another great thing associated with alone time is increased concentration and focus. You’ll have full-on attention and focus if you like to be alone. Because when we’re going solo, our brains work single-minded and turn on 100% focus and concentration. Once we get back to social settings, the brain keeps that momentum going and makes you more alert and observant.
Signs that will tell you to have some alone time
Without alone time, issues arise in relationships, at the workplace, and in general. Your brain sends you the signals that you need to have some alone time, and once you do it, you come back fresh and with patience. Watch out for these indicators, determine whether any of these is present in you, and allocate considerable time for yourself to deal with it effectively:
- With every passing day, you’re becoming short-tempered.
- You’re going mad over little things.
- Social meetups and the company of others drain your brain, and you don’t have any interest in such conversations.
- Unfocused and unconcentrated efforts in whatever you’re doing.
- Things and goals are on the back burner, and this thought gives you anxiety and pressure.
- The sense that you’re wasting time by being with others.
Everyone feels this way at some point in time, and the best way is to take some time off and enjoy solitary and isolation. or just spend a couple of hours daily or on weekends alone and do things you love doing. You’ll reclaim your charm and bring clarity to your thoughts. Not just that, when you get connected to yourself, you feel prouder and exceptionally better.
How to spend your time being alone?
Now you’ve come to the realization that being alone is okay and it strengthens your emotional and psychological health, the next steppingstone is what to do in isolation. Be mindful it’s not okay to use a cellphone, scrawl social media, or watch TV shows. These habits are normal routines and can’t provide any of the benefits of being alone. The following are pretty useful ways to help you productively spend alone time.
1. Tap into your thoughts
Often we have opinions without knowledge. For instance, you know what passive business you’ll like to start, but you don’t understand its complications. Research about it, dig deep and make a roadmap for that. Plan what you would like to be doing in the next five or ten years, and ponder over your plans. This will give you the sense that you’re progressing and on the right path.
Similarly, if you have views on politics, read about history, and conform your arguments based on knowledge. Essence is that whatever makes you interested, seek better information about it and check your views whether they’re aligned to reality or not.
2. Get into physical activities
Various studies have concluded that those who work on their bodies deliver outstanding results. It’s needless to say how critical this is for your mental wellbeing, too. Considering that, you can earplug headphones and turn on music, and start jogging or exercising. Meditation is another helpful way to spend your alone time. Involve yourself in different sports, for instance, swimming, dancing, bicycling, hiking, and paddleboarding. All these activities release endorphins, those neurotransmitters in your brain that can make you feel happier.
3. Become a friend of the nature
We get further away from depression and lower blood pressure as we get closer to nature. This isn’t my word; research has proven it. Take a walk in the park, go to explore mountains, spend time planting trees and plants, hang out by the water, listen to birds humming, and breathe deeply in the fresh morning air. Enjoy nature’s views and be thankful.
4. Throw a treat to yourself
Now, this is one of my favorites! Cook the top-notch meal for yourself, set the table, use a cloth napkin, light a candle, and do whatever you would do if you were throwing a dinner party. You deserve it for all the efforts you’ve been putting in for years.
Similarly, take yourself on a solo date. Visit a restaurant, order food, and reward yourself with a delicious meal!
5. Go on a long drive
Sometimes it’s one of the most joyful activities. Drive at a fast pace or slow – what you like – and put the music on soothing volume, drive across the town, and admire your city/town. Explore new places and go where your random direction is taking you. Or pick the place that’s a bit far and go there to cherish nature. For example, a faraway waterfall or hilly area. Please your eyes with the beauty of nature and drive across while viewing wonderful views. It’ll be a great way to spend time with yourself!
6. Let your mind wander randomly
Do you feel that you’ve accomplished nothing? Does this thought unsettle you? That’s probably because it’s been a long time since you’ve allowed yourself to just be. Switch off all devices and comfortably sit or lie down on the couch. Darken the room, shut your eyes, or simply stair through the windows.
Do something repetitive such as chewing gum. Let your mind wildly cruise or float and see where it takes you. Let it drift into imagination, a fake world, hypothetically predict the future and recall old memories. Flow with your mind for a few minutes, and you’ll truly be grateful and relieved once this is over.
7. Learn new skill
Well, this is extremely productive. Learn graphic designing, cooking, painting, book writing, or any other technical skill related to your interest. Don’t aim to seek excellence in it, as it creates hurdles in progressing. Just learn it because of your interest. You’ll gradually understand that you’ve come far enough to master it and even make a passive career with that. This is the best way to be okay being alone and utilize that time to its core. All you need to do is figure out what fascinates you and simply start doing that in your alone time.
It’s time to accept the challenge and be okay with being alone. The pain of loneliness is extreme. To combat it by being alone (remember the difference between these two) and perform effective activities that will keep you away from negative thinking. Whether you’re dealing with breakup pain or going through any of mentioned signs that tell you to spend some alone time, the best way is to enjoy solitary moments.
It’ll enrich you with confidence, indescribable happiness, and emotional wellbeing. Lastly, if you master the art of being alone and keep yourself happy with that, you’ll need no one to motivate you and show you the direction in life. You’ll become a self-motivator and make big decisions in your life with conviction!