I’ve always been one to embrace the idea of solo dining. It’s just one of those things that I find utterly calming. The last restaurant I ate alone was a local burger joint. I brought a book with me (naturally) and ordered a turkey burger.
And when I needed a break from reading, I had a conversation about wine with the server, before proceeding to order a few glasses for myself. For me, eating out alone is by far the best way to dedicate some time to just myself.
It might seem strange and even lonely to some people but sitting alone at a restaurant quiets the noise and forces me to explore my true feelings so that I can deal with them head-on instead of pushing them to the sidelines.
Not many people know this, but I have similar sentiments when it comes to being home alone. I am an introvert by nature; a solitary hermit that thrives in the absence of others. It’s just how I’ve always been. I’ve never been more content than when I’ve talked my husband and kids into running some errands outside the house so that I can have a long stretch of solitude.
Don’t get me wrong, my family is the most important thing to me. However, a girl needs her freedom now and again. You know, some time alone to eat a tub of ice-cream, let her hair down, binge on some reality shows in a judgment-free zone. Now does that sound like heaven or what?
Read a book
Even when you love being alone, sudden bursts of loneliness can wash over you unexpectedly. For instance, even though it certainly a treat for me to have the house to myself, I do find myself missing my husband and child, as well as the commotion that having a full house brings.
During such instances, I like to whip out a book to cure these abrupt bursts. It doesn’t matter what genre of book I have on hand- it could be a book that’s based on lonely characters or one that’s centered on a big adventure, it will make you forget being lonely.
It may even help to make any challenges that you may have seem that much easier to tackle. If you are looking for recommendations on what you should read, CoolThingsChicago has a lovely list of reads that can occupy your time and mind.
Play a fun game with your spouse
Sometimes our parents offer to babysit, which leaves us with the house to ourselves. During such moments, the husband and I like to find activities that we can take part in together. Not only does this allow us to bond and catch up on each other’s lives, but it also rekindles our relationship and makes us feel like we are dating again.
Whenever we don’t want to leave the house or when we are watching our spending, one thing that we like to do is play a competitive game of ping pong. When we don’t feel like sweating, we also like to play adult games– anything that can get us laughing and acting silly with each other is a welcome distraction.
Get some sleep
As a mum, I often find myself sucked into the ‘’I need to get everything done before the kids get up mentality’’ like so many other mums out there. This often causes me to skimp on sleep, which we all know has adverse effects on one’s health.
As such, whenever I find myself alone, I like to take long uninterrupted naps before I proceed to do anything else with my time. This will ensure that I am nice and rested before everyone comes back, which will also give me plenty of energy to keep things moving.
If you don’t often find time to go to the gym or fit in a workout because of your busy schedule, then you should consider fitting in a workout or a physical activity the next time you find yourself alone at home. There are plenty of ways to get up and get moving from the comfort of your home.
Like practicing yoga for instance? There are plenty of yoga apps that can get you started. Better still, there are plenty of great workouts available free on Youtube so that you can participate and feel like part of a community or tribe.
Try learning a new language
Granted, you probably won’t be able to hold a proper conversation right away, but the process will boost your cognitive abilities and you might even pick up a few words here and there that will allow you to impress and dazzle at the dinner table. Or if you would rather not use an app, you can alternatively take interactive online classes, some of which are even taught by some of your favorite celebrities.
Some people cannot stand being home alone- I’m not one of those people. There are so many benefits of being alone and yet people don’t take advantage of them. Now, we’re not encouraging you to go all Tom Hanks in Cast Away here, but taking some nights to be alone at home can do wonders for your overall wellbeing.
Often, when we are surrounded by too many people, it forces us to expend energy that we sometimes don’t have. Trying to keep those around you happy can be mentally draining and it can take a toll, which is why it is so important to set time aside to just be by yourself.
When you spend time alone, it teaches you to trust your instincts as you are often forced to make decisions without any third-party validation. Plus, you can sing as loudly and as terribly as you want when you are alone in a judgment-free zone, which is a win is almost every book.