9 Ways to Embrace Living Alone?

1. Buy yourself something nice:

It’s that age-old principle of retail therapy, the understanding that there is always a certain joy in buying yourself something you’ve wanted for a long time — and it doesn’t have to be an extravagant purchase, either.

Maybe your life is so hectic with errands and work and family obligations that you haven’t had any time left over to go shopping or take yourself out for dinner. So next weekend, when you’re home alone and don’t have anything else going on, treat yourself! It’ll be good for your mental health (and who knows? Shopping might help your physical health too.)

2. Make Your Own Rules:

If you like to say “yes” to everything and everyone like I do, then consider making a pact with yourself: Each week, you get to pick one day where you’re allowed to say “yes” to anything that anyone asks you — no questions asked. It can be an extra work commitment or something fun, like going out on the weekend when typically you’d be catching up on Netflix (which is also perfectly fine). But make sure it’s something gratifying and substantial.

3. Ditch Your Plans:

I catch myself constantly creating plans for my nights at home alone — staying in to watch TV; cooking dinner; reading a book; surfing the Internet for hours. And while all of these activities are fine by themselves, they don’t lead anywhere exciting. So if you want to feel like you’ve had a night on your own, ditch the plans. You never know what will happen when you’re completely unplanned and free to run wild (and if nothing happens, then at least you can enjoy not having any responsibilities!)

4. Mix It Up:

Am I the only one who feels weird about eating dinner by myself? Either it’s too quiet or my mind starts racing with all the things I could be doing with that time instead of watching TV (like writing this article, for example). But turning on music while cooking or setting out some candles does wonder for breaking up the silence! And once dinner is eaten and dishes are washed, why not pick something foreign to do alone in your apartment? Sometimes I’ll pull out my laptop and check out a new website, or read recipes for meals that sound interesting — who knows, you might come up with your next big project.

5. Explore Your Apartment:

On those nights when you stay in and catch up on Netflix (I can’t be the only one), don’t just stick to the couch! Get off your butt and walk around your apartment — is there anything you’ve been wanting to pick up or fix or move? It’s always fun to make little changes here and there; it gives you the motivation to clean more often (which we all know is an ongoing battle) and makes living alone feel like home.

6. Reflect:

After a long day of work or your weekly Girls Night Out, consider giving yourself some time to relax and reflect. Go for a run or take a bath! I love to light some candles, close my eyes, and just think about the day that’s passed. If you’re not used to being alone with your thoughts, it can be really tough at first — but trust me when I say it’s helpful to try! Sometimes our minds are too cluttered these days; take advantage of this time, because this is one thing you’ll never regret spending more time on.

7. Treat Yourself:

I really can’t emphasize this point enough. Treating yourself doesn’t have to mean buying something expensive (it usually doesn’t) or doing something extravagant (again, it usually doesn’t). It can be as simple as going to the movies alone or grabbing a drink at your favorite bar. If nothing else, treat yourself by taking a break from social networking!

8. Have Fun:

This is the most obvious point of them all, but I find it super easy to get caught up in everything else. So make sure to keep your “me” time fun! There are plenty of ways to do this — you can read or watch TV or go for a walk outside (which also has the added benefit of making you feel accomplished). Whatever activity helps put you in a good mood, just remember that happiness is key! And if nothing else, being happy alone will lead to being happier with others.

9. Get Busy Living:

This is probably my favorite quote these days because it takes us back to the most important thing in life: living. And while we all know that every day consists of a lot of time spent doing things we don’t want to — work school, chores — we need to make sure we’re not neglecting the precious moments when we’re happy and free. So if you can spend your nights at home alone finding happiness and fulfillment (even with no plans), chances are these nights will be even more joyous when they include someone else!

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