Thought Catalog

10 Little Tricks To Learn To Love Being Alone

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Stijn Te Strake

1. Get In Shape.

Good health is a fundamental key to happiness. Now that you have more free time and will spend less time caring for another, start eating right, exercising and improving your physical condition. When you feel good about your health and body, your self-esteem improves and you’ll surely be happier.

2. Do Something You Always Wanted to Do and Haven’t.

When you are alone, you can pretty much do what you want when you want it. Go skydiving, go watch a rocket launch, take up dance, learn a new language, etc. This is your chance to fulfill some missed dreams.

3. Travel.

I thought I would hate traveling alone, but it’s fantastic. I go where I want, how I want, and stay where I want. I eat when and where I want and take as many pictures as I want without anyone getting annoyed. And when you travel alone, your focus is on seeing the sites, feeling the experiences and you do get to meet a lot of new and interesting people.

4. Express Yourself.

Write, paint, do photography, build something, decorate your apartment, etc. There is nothing more cathartic than opening up and finding your voice in creative expression. In my case I took up writing and became a writer for several well-known publications and I have a book coming out in a few months. It was a huge relief for me to be able to tell my story and share my experiences.

5. It’s Your House Now.

Whether you have a house, apartment, live in a mobile home or on a boat, make this area your castle. The wonderful aspect of living alone is that I can decorate, furnish, and run my home (cool temperatures!) exactly as I like. It really makes my home feel like home – sweet home.

6. Eat Out For Happiness.

Eat out in a way that will make you happy. Sitting alone at a fancy restaurant is only fun for food critics. I grab meals to go (or cook for myself) and find fantastic places to sit and eat and watch something interesting. In warmer weather, there’s nothing better than enjoying a healthy meal, and watching a beautiful sunrise or sunset.

7. Network.

A favorite saying of mine is, if you are not networking you are not working. Go to events of all kinds, especially networking events. It’s the best place to meet new people, find business and job opportunities and learn about what is going on. I almost never walk away from such an event without something positive.

8. Be Social.

When out and about engage other people. Put down your cell phone and at least once per day turn to someone nearby and ask them how their day is going or ask them if they have heard anything new they’d like to share. You will find the act of engaging another human uplifting for them and for you.

9. Charity.

Helping others is the absolute best way to cure loneliness and increase happiness. Get out of your house and volunteer. Donate your time (and money) to helping others. I did very little of that while I was married. As a single person, I got involved and now I am on the board of directors for two non-profits and it always makes feel like I am doing something worthwhile for humanity.

10. Gratitude.

Gratitude is the number one key to finding happiness. You may be alone, but I promise you that you have much to be happy about. Write down a list of things you are grateful for, starting with, “I am alive.” My list has over 50 items on it and I try to add to it regularly – and I look at it regularly anytime I am feeling down or lonely.

I am not suggesting that being alone is the only or best way to be. In fact, good relationships should provide significant benefits, meaningful experiences and happiness. But life is going to force us to be alone at times – sometimes more than we’d like. When you learn to love being alone, you’ll find peace, happiness, greater productivity and you will make better relationship decisions – and you’ll get to live a BIG LIFE – a life that you will love. TC mark

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