Being Alone is Not the Same as Being Lonely

BY Faith Watson        January 14, 2016

Connecting with others is remarkably rewarding for many, and usually necessary for most.

Being alone is necessary, too. And yet, for some reason, many people think being alone is sad. Or grumpy. But being alone is not the same as being lonely, or being anti-social, or being unwanted.

For some of us, being alone can bring sheer joy—like if we have a lot of demands on our time in the form of relationships or events. We might actually try to make time to be alone. We call it “me” time. And me time is a good time.

On the other hand, some people are intentionally alone, or solo by nature, much of the time. These are the beautiful introverts—quieter, more observant ones. They might function better with less interaction or prefer more time with their thoughts.

Permission to Embrace Your Solitude

Whether or not you spend a lot of time around other people, please know that you are fully allowed to devote time to self-reflection and renewal—as much as you need.

Solitude can be a blissful, monk-like experience, as you spend time on your own in nature. Or time with your creativity. Or time concentrating on your health. Or time filled with peace.

That’s not lonely time, that’s personal time. Embrace it!

You can embrace your solitude and still maintain all your fulfilling relationships and activities. However it’s helpful to realize that when we spend a lot of time around a lot of people, we might end up giving a lot of energy to interacting with, learning from, or trying to help them. Awesome. If we have the resources, giving energy is lovely. But we must recycle and reuse that energy, too, and solitude can be the well we gather it from.

The more time we spend alone, the less time we need to spend wondering if we’re making a good impression.

The less time we spend alone, the more time we might spend exhausting ourselves trying to please others.

Truly, there are positive effects to being alone. You can be yourself. Find yourself. Pamper yourself. Trust yourself! You can more carefully weigh your options. You can offer help and ask for help at the times of most need. In fact, if you think about it, you’re never truly alone on this planet.

You’re allowed to enjoy your own company. And when you’re ready, you can reach out. We’ll be here.

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Faith Watson

Faith Watson created 52 Permission Slips to help you feel allowed—literally that you have permission—to take the best care of yourself. To help readers calm down, free up and live happy by accepting the simple beauty of their human condition, week by week. And to experience amazing improvements without needing to hack stuff. By day, she is an online marketing copywriter and coach at pen to Zen helping entrepreneurs create meaningful marketing messages and authentic copy they can truly be proud of. Faith loves sharing on Facebook so head on over.

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