By Lauren Rodriguez, Guest BloggerDecember 30, 2015
Image via blogspot
I love being alone and most of the people I know don’t get it. I’ve actually had friends react with pity as I explain to them how I often have a “self date” where I take myself to dinner and a movie. I usually get the response “Oh I could never do that by myself!”
I wasn’t always like this, though. Growing up in a huge family, and always surrounded by friends, I was almost never alone. It wasn’t until I moved to California in my mid- twenties, alone, that I discovered just how valuable alone time could be. At first I was petrified; I had just moved to one of the biggest cities in the country and had no friends here!
Without any company, I was forced to really put myself out there and do many things on my own which before I had always done with friends or family. Being alone made me independent and confident, and I found so much power in not needing someone with me all the time.
I think an important step to learn how to enjoy being alone is to know the difference between being lonely and being alone.I equate loneliness with more of sadness because I’m missing someone in particular, or just being around people in general that feed my soul. I love being social, and when loneliness sets in that’s when I know it’s time to go out and interact with folks.
Sometimes I do feel loneliest surrounded by people, and usually when that happens it means there’s something going on inside of me that I need to address, which signals to me that I need a little alone time.
I have come to equate being alone with solitude. I spend my solo time working on my art, reading books, and watching films that inspire me. Being alone has made me a better adventurer. It’s freeing to not always have to schedule things with others; there’s power in getting up one day, hopping in my car or on my bike, and just going where I want to go, no questions asked, no plans to be made.
We spend so much of our time wrapped up in our lives with others, that we often neglect to take care of ourselves. Alone time can be a little daunting for this reason, but I urge you to try it out. You will learn so much about yourself by spending some quality time with YOU! Marilyn Monroe once said, “I restore myself when I’m alone” and I think that’s such a great way to view alone time--it’s a restorative process, just for you and no one else. When things are really hectic for me, I use my alone time to shut the world out and decompress, which helps me be happier and more productive in the end.
Here are some great self-dates when you need some alone-with-YOU time.
- Hiking or doing something outdoors is always a great place to start! I can sit on the beach for hours alone reading, writing, and snapping photos.
- Dinner and a movie. Treat Yo’self to a nice meal, then hit the movies – you won’t have to share your popcorn, movies will never be the same!
- Classes are great. Yoga, painting, anything that interests you! Sometimes it’s hard to walk into a place where you know zero people, so the itch to take a friend along can be overwhelming, but it’s such a huge confidence builder to go it alone.
This week spend a little quality time with you.
Give one of Lauren’s self-date suggestions a try and tell us what you discovered below.
Lauren loves soaking up new people and new experiences. She’s found her way through sexual assault and and eating disorder and she’s learning every day how to live better with depression. She values family, friendships, helping others, laughter, and the ocean. She’s just a roaming soul learning to live a desire-based life.
Every girl is a work in progress. If you need more help, click here.