I came across this quote by Oscar Wilde and just got it, you know? I mean how do you know how to be yourself if you have no idea how to be by yourself?
I’m not talking about your relationship status or whether you’re a billy-no mates. And I’m not talking about you growing old and dying all by yourself with a little tear in your eye. No. Lets not be dramatic. I’m just talking about you learning to appreciate spending some time with yourself. You know, hanging out with you, me myself and I stylee.
Being. Alone. Those two words that when put together tend to scare the beJAYsus out of people. Some find it a struggle to embrace their ‘me’ time but what are you really afraid of? That once you’re alone you might find that you don’t like yourself?
Look at it like me: There are a lot of people in this world that I don’t like, but I’m sure as hell not one of them.
Besides, now is the perfect time to cultivate the skill of befriending yourself. During the festive period times get a little crazy. You’re off visiting this family member or meeting up with this friend and the chance of any ‘me’ time gets pushed down the totem pole of importance. So when January arrives it is good for the soul to step back from all the social do-gooding and be at peace in our own headspace.
I love spending time alone, in fact it’s one of my favourite things to do. I look forward to shutting the door on everyone and everything else and just hanging out with me. My time is my own; I can do what I want, when I want, without having to justify it to anyone. This has nothing to do with being averse to spending time with other people; I cherish and appreciate the time that I spend with family and friends. It’s just that 9 times out of 10 I prefer my own company.
Does this make me a bad person? No. Just a solitary one.
When I hang solo it is peaceful and quiet. Just how I like it. It gives me a chance to think about the things that need thinking about and a chance to do the things that need doing. And when nothing needs thinking about or doing it gives my thoughts a chance to be free.
I know that some don’t exactly savor the thought of spending any time alone, although I don’t really understand why. I know someone who would rather die than so much as go into a cafe and have a coffee on her own, whereas I’d quite happily while away a couple of hours sat in Costa with a latte of five. But even those alone-o-phobic’s will admit that being by yourself in a coffee shop is bordering acceptable. But what about a restaurant? Would you dare walk in alone and ask for a table for one? What about the cinema? Would you go and watch a movie solo? I certainly will be if I can’t convince Mamma Smith to sit for three hours to watch Les Mis this week. And you know what, I don’t even care.
But then again what if everyone looks and notices your alone? What if their minds start running away with them and they think you have no friends and you skulk around places by yourself like some weird social loner!
I hate to drop this bomb, but (move in so I can whisper it to you)- nobody is looking at you, nobody cares. The reason being because they are too busy thinking about themselves. After that initial ‘wow, she’s hanging solo’ people go back to being concerned with themselves. Nobody is judging you. Shock of all horrors you might a get a funny look, but so what? If you are there alone you have more confidence in yourself than any other person in the place. Hold on to that.
Here’s another quote that is quite appropriate ‘Beware those who seek constant crowds, for they are nothing alone.’- Charles Bukowski.
Spending time alone can be peaceful, it can be fun, it can be insightful, it can be indulgent, it can be productive, and it can be relaxing. It can be whatever you want it to be because it’s your time. If I say so myself, I think I’m pretty great company so why shouldn’t I enjoy hanging out with me? At the end of day, you’re the best friend you’ll ever have. Once you’re comfortable being alone with yourself everything else in life starts to feel a bit more comfortable too, because you’re not on your own, you’ve got you on your side. Practice makes perfect, so for those of you who are a little apprehensive where alone time is concerned, give it try, odds are that you’ll discover you’re pretty awesome company too.