During these challenging times, you might be yearning for more feel-good moments so you can be more joyful. Though it is vitally important to keep in touch with friends to increase your happiness, you can also find solace and joy in reveling in solitude.
Finding your joy starts with you, so why not practice feeling grateful each morning? Also, know that you possess the ability to create real happiness from your own company.
In addition, when you're not at ease with being by yourself, remember to start slow. First, you can start by setting a time for reflective journaling for at least 15 minutes daily. Furthermore, write down things that make you smile. Through the act of writing down your thoughts, you are taking the time for yourself to process how you feel and what will work for you in your path to feeling happy by yourself.
There is a real difference between loneliness versus solitude. Loneliness is defined as a mental state that is marked by a negative sense of being socially isolated. On the other hand, solitude is a positive mental state that is felt by the absence of feeling lonely. When a person experiences loneliness, the feeling that something is missing is pervasive. However, solitude is a joyful state of being alone and feeling wonderful in your own company.
During solitude, you don't feel a lack of being around people or the fear of missing out. In fact, solitude is often marked by experiencing moments of contentment in your life while savoring your own company.
How do you move away from the loneliness that permeates when nobody is around? The first step starts with genuinely nourishing yourself. Self-love leads to higher self-esteem, firm boundaries, and most importantly, tapping into the delight of your own company. In addition, letting yourself focus on gratitude and personal growth on a daily basis moves you out of your comfort zone of numbing out into your phone, and instead intentionally showing up for yourself.
In fact, learning how to enjoy your own company for even a few minutes a day will help you build internal resilience during COVID-19. Savoring your own time alone can be as simple as taking a much-deserved bubble bath or dancing around the house to your favorite music. Give yourself permission to enjoy your life without the distraction of others. The act of self-love and enjoying quality time by yourself often begins with showing love and care for yourself.
A lot of hurt feelings are brought on by the unmet expectations of others. At the end of the day, the only person that you can control is yourself. Emotion can get the best of us when we feel that others are not paying enough attention to us. However, letting go of notions about how others should act gives us the time to practice mindfulness both by ourselves and in the company of others.
What exactly does this mean? Mindfulness is the act of being present with all of your senses in the present moment with no judgment towards yourself or others. Easy ways to foster solitude can be focusing on not being distracted and practicing non-judgment and self-compassion.
Throughout your day, find little moments of joy. By taking the time to allow yourself to scan your life for enjoyable moments, you will start to live a life that isn't dependent on what others think.
In addition, parents often feel guilty when they need to regroup and carve out time for themselves. Be unapologetic about prioritizing both your mental and physical health. It's hard to pour from an empty glass, so make time to nourish your internal energy reserves. Often, solitude is taking a moment to show up for yourself without the distractions from the outside world. It can be admiring the clouds with a sense of awe when nobody else is around.
The author of Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport says it best. "Solitude Deprivation 'A state in which you spend close to zero time alone with your own thoughts and free from input from other minds.'” It is in the act of taking a moment for ourselves that our most creative ideas can come. Jill Winger, a successful entrepreneur, author, mom of three, and a modern homesteader who also teaches time management to her followers' states, "Alone time is not selfish. We can't fill other people's cups if we ours are empty."
In short, solitude fosters joy and a positive mind-frame that allows us to help others while we show up for ourselves. So go ahead and carve out those 30 minutes for a walk in nature and take your time guilt-free to have fun in your own company. Be intentional about your life circumstance by creating simple ways to enjoy YOU.