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How to Overcome Loneliness and Enjoy Your Own Company

Spending time alone can be daunting for some people, but it doesn't have to be a negative experience.

Just like having productive morning routines and understanding how to get started on goals, learning to enjoy your own company can be a valuable skill leading to greater self-awareness and personal growth.

Here are some suggestions to help you become okay with being alone.

Smiley face, happy, alone

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How To Enjoy Your Own Company


Understand the Difference Between Being Alone and Feeling Lonely.

It's essential to recognize that being alone and feeling lonely are two different things. Being alone means that you are by yourself, while feeling lonely is a subjective feeling of isolation or disconnection from others.

It's possible to feel lonely even when surrounded by people, and it's also possible to enjoy being alone without feeling lonely. Understanding this difference can help you reframe your thoughts about solitude and embrace it as a positive experience.


1. Connect With Yourself

Spending time alone can provide opportunities for self-reflection, relaxation, creativity, and personal development.

Being alone is not a negative thing but rather a chance to connect with yourself.

Connect with myself? What does it meaannnnnn? Here are some aspects of connecting with yourself:

  • Self-awareness

Pay attention to your thoughts, feelings, and sensations in the present moment without judgment.

  • Self-acceptance

Embrace both your positive qualities and your imperfections.

  • Self-reflection

Reflect on your experiences, actions, and decisions to help you gain a deeper understanding of yourself. Ask yourself meaningful questions to explore your motivations, values, and goals.

  • Honoring your needs

Listen to your inner voice and take steps to meet those needs, whether they are related to rest, self-care, personal growth, or relationships.

  • Setting boundaries

Recognize and communicate your limits to others, ensuring that your own needs and well-being are respected.

  • Authenticity

Learn to express your thoughts, emotions, and values authentically rather than conforming to others' expectations.

  • Self-care

Engaging in activities you enjoy and that promote your well-being helps you feel more connected and grounded.


2. Shift Your Perspective

For many people, a partner is a surefire way to combat loneliness, but what do you do when you're single or have been single for a long time with no viable prospects on the horizon...if ya know what I mean.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • What if nobody comes to save me?

  • What if my last (romantic) relationship was my last relationship?

  • What is it that I seek from others that I can give myself?

Instead of viewing being alone as loneliness or isolation, reframe it as a conscious choice for self-care and self-discovery.

Focus on the positive aspects of solitude, such as freedom, independence, and the ability to engage in activities you enjoy.

Become the person you're looking for in others. Treat yourself how you would want a partner to treat you. Respect yourself. Show up for yourself.


3. Engage in Solo Activities

Pay attention to the times when you're most critical of yourself. You'll find it's mostly when you're feeling bored and living without purpose.

An easy fix is to discover and engage in activities that you genuinely enjoy doing alone. It'll give you something to focus on other than your feelings of loneliness, as well as give you something to look forward to, a sense of purpose.

This could include:

  • Reading

  • Writing

  • Painting

  • Learning a new skill.

  • Playing an instrument.

  • Hiking

  • Taking a drive, having a picnic.

  • Cooking

  • Practicing mindfulness and meditation.

  • Taking yourself on dates.

Find hobbies and interests you can pursue independently to make alone time more fulfilling. Doing things that bring you joy will make you less lonely or bored and more likely to feel content and fulfilled.


4. Practice Mindfulness

When you're spending time alone, it's important to take care of yourself physically and emotionally.

This means practicing self-care activities like taking a relaxing bath, going for a walk, or indulging in your favorite hobby.

It also means being kind and compassionate to yourself, especially if you start to feel lonely or anxious. Remind yourself that it's okay to feel these emotions and that you can handle them.

Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding you would offer to a friend in need.


5. Connect Virtually

Sometimes the thought of going out in the world and engaging with people can feel too overwhelming, and yet, you have a need for social interaction.

A great middle ground is connecting with others through online communities, forums, or video calls.

  • Reach out to friends and family.

Initiate virtual conversations with friends and family members through video calls, voice chats, or messaging apps. Share your feelings of loneliness and let them know you'd appreciate their company.

  • Join online communities

Engaging in discussions, sharing experiences, and connecting with like-minded individuals can help alleviate feelings of loneliness.

  • Attend virtual events and classes.

Many organizations, institutions, and communities now offer virtual events, webinars, workshops, and classes.

  • Volunteer or contribute online

Look for virtual volunteering opportunities or find platforms where you can offer your skills and support remotely.

  • Engage in virtual hobbies and activities.

It could be playing online games with others, participating in virtual fitness classes, joining book clubs, or attending virtual art sessions.


6. Challenge Negative Thoughts

Identify and challenge any negative thoughts or beliefs about being alone. There are often feelings of shame connected to being alone.

If you find yourself feeling worthless because you don't have a partner or big group of friends, you're probably attaching your self-worth to other people. Meaning you only feel worthy/ deserving/ respected/ seen when you're validated by the people around you.

So what happens when no one's around? No other people = no validation = something must be wrong with you.

Not true.

Learn to rely on yourself. Learn to validate your own feelings and existence. Learn to be the person you're looking for in someone else, and be the safe, secure space for yourself.

Remind yourself of the positive aspects and the opportunities that come with solitude.

Replace negative thoughts with positive affirmations and supportive self-talk.

Do everything you want to do with someone, alone.

  • Got to the movies alone.

  • Take yourself out to dinner alone.

  • Buy yourself flowers.

  • Buy the perfume, the shoes, the phone, the camera.

  • Figure out how to fix the leaking faucet.

  • Plan that trip and go solo.


7. Seek Professional Help if Needed

While there are many ways to combat loneliness and enjoy your own company, it's important to recognize when professional help may be necessary.

If feelings of loneliness persist despite your efforts to connect with others and find joy in solitude, it may be helpful to seek the guidance of a mental health professional.

They can provide support and guidance in developing coping strategies and addressing any underlying mental health concerns contributing to feelings of loneliness.

Remember, seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness.


The Bottom Line

Remember, being okay with being alone is a process that may take time and practice. Be patient with yourself and embrace the opportunity for self-growth and self-discovery that solitude can provide.


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