The Art of Being Alone

I love people and I love talking but I energise when I’m by myself. I like that time to just breathe without other people breathing with me.

I like going out and spending time with people, but if all I did was host dinner parties, I’d be exhausted and grouchy for life, campers. But I can’t do isolation, either. No man is an island, and sometimes after having too much alone time I seek people out because I need company.

I love my two roommates and I love having them around and having a chat and a laugh. But when they’re both out of the room, I really appreciate that time. That time to read my blog post out loud as I type (because my blog posts are always better when I read them out loud), to play guitar without annoying someone, to listen to my music out loud and just listen to my music with just me, to read a book and simply read a book with just me. I don’t know. I just like being by myself sometimes. I like journaling when I’m the only one in the room. It’s a personal thing and I just need the space to do it, even if no one in the room is talking.

There are also some things that are kind of lovelier when you’re by yourself. Like markets or art galleries or libraries. Other people want to look at different things to you and they make different comments to you and you feel a bit tied down and they want to leave earlier than you or browse longer than you. Being on your own, you’re able to have your own opinion and you feel good about it because there’s no one there to disagree with it. You can take it at your own pace and not feel frustrated or rushed.

Since I started living in community at the start of 2016, being by myself always feels like a bit of a reward. I really treasure those moments, because they don’t come around often. It always feels like I’m treating myself, so I try to do things that I love doing on my own.

When I’m by myself, I take my time and take care. I might paint my nails whilst listening to music, or play a favourite movie out loud on my laptop. I’ll blog or journal or guitar. I’ll write a poem, I’ll read a book, I’ll moisturise my legs and feel like the softest, smoothest person in the entire world. I’ll make a cup of tea and savour it. I’ll fold washing because for some reason that’s really therapeutic? (This is making me sound a bit like a dag, isn’t it? Should I admit that I organise my wardrobe and bookcase for fun, too?)

I might bake something, because I only like baking when no one else is around. I’ll sing louder than usual, because I don’t usually like singing in front of others. Some things I just appreciate more when I’m by myself, because it feels different somehow.

I’m not in the room alone right now and that’s okay, too. I love people and I love being alone, and I think that’s okay. It’s definitely okay.

Sarah xx

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