Random Thoughts on Being Healthy Alone — Sept. 14, 2021
A concept that I’ve given some thought to this week is being alone, or rather being healthy while being alone…
Notice how I didn’t say loneliness but rather the act of actively being alone. Even though I live by myself, I wouldn’t say that I’m lonely. However, given a summer filled with busyness and social engagements (read: lot’s of weddings), I can see that my tolerance for being alone with my own thoughts has dramatically declined. This is especially true when comparing to last year.
Thinking back to last year, it’s incredible how productive I was. At a time where the whole world shut down, the space that was created allowed me to achieve these things that I always “should’ve made” time for but didn’t.
Now that social things are happening more and more, I find that I have to remind myself how to be okay when I’m not socializing. Even this past weekend, I think about struggling with feelings of boredom and FOMO when it was very clear that my time could be productive and well spent by myself.
As we head into Fall and *shudders* Winter, I think it’s important to remember that it’s okay to seek space. It’s okay to down invitations to be social. You can be healthy AND alone, the two are not mutually exclusive.
As coach and author, Jen Sincero says, “Love yourself; like you are the only you there is.” My challenge to you this week: Take 30 minutes and just sit with your thoughts. What are they like? Where do they go?
You don’t have to tell me what happens, or you can, your choice.
SHORT Why You Should Find Time to Be Alone With Yourself [New York Times]
I’m sharing this article specifically because it was written in a pre-pandemic context. In this piece, one gets to ponder the evidence that shows that enjoying time by oneself can actually be very relaxing for people rather than promoting loneliness. The article further explores the benefits of being alone, while examining simple ways to inject your life with quality alone time.
LONG How to Be Alone Without Being Lonely [Harvard Business Review]
While this article was written mostly with the first stages of the pandemic in mind, I think the advice is still relevant and applicable. I think the best thing mentioned in the piece is the fact that it is the quality of the social interactions, rather than the quality that lead to feelings of connectedness. Essentially confirming that you don’t have to chase every social opportunity that comes your way — only the right ones.
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As always, I’m always looking for better ways to do things, so let me know your thoughts. In the meantime…
Live, Laugh, and Learn.
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