Be Your Own Best Friend
How To Be Alone Without Being Lonely
How much time do you spend by yourself? Your answer may have changed over the past few years. Due to the pandemic, people are spending a lot more time alone with social gatherings being limited and new protocols being introduced every day. This can lead to feelings of loneliness. Loneliness occurs when we crave social or emotional needs that are not being met. It is important to note there is a difference between being alone and being lonely. Spending time alone does not have to mean you're lonely and can be an amazing opportunity to get to know yourself better.
Here are some tips to help you appreciate your time alone:
Take A Break. Social media is a highlight reel of everyone’s best moments, and it can be hard to not compare yourself to what you see online. If you find yourself feeling left out or anxious, put your phone down and try to find a new activity to keep yourself busy.
Start A Project. Take this time to do something for you. Maybe you have something you have always wanted to do but have always put off. Having a creative outlet can relieve your stress and make you feel in control.
Express Gratitude. Expressing gratitude can be one of the best ways to ground yourself and give yourself perspective. By focusing on what you have rather than what you don’t, you put yourself in a more positive mindset and appreciate everything more.
Create A Relationship With Yourself. Lean into the discomfort of being alone and get to know yourself better. Take yourself on a date, or stay home and journal about your likes, dislikes, and current emotions. Take this opportunity to create a relationship with yourself.
Spend Time In Nature. Getting outside for even small periods of time can boost your mood and lower your blood pressure. Take yourself for a walk and allow yourself to enjoy your time outdoors.
Alone time can be something you cherish, rather than something you dread. Look at the time as an opportunity to build the relationship you have with yourself, and to get to know yourself better.
Sometimes all of the self-care and gratitude lists in the world aren’t enough to shake the feeling of loneliness. If this is the case, never hesitate to reach out for help. PACS here at UNH have many resources to help you through anything you may be going through.