How to Enjoy Alone Time

via NYT
Even with a busy social calendar and a lot of responsibilities, it's easy to find yourself alone with no plans from time to time. For extroverts this may seem like the worst thing ever and for introverts this may seem depressingly familiar, but being alone doesn't have to mean being lonely! Here are some of my top tips on how to feel perfectly happy enjoying a quiet day at home.

1. Always have some kind of sound in the background. Whether you want to play music, keep the TV on, listen to podcasts or TED Talks, or even open the windows and let in natural noise, find a way to make sure your space never gets too quiet.

2. Watch cooking shows while you're cooking for yourself. Not only do you feel like someone else is there in the kitchen with you, but you also might get some helpful cooking tips and great meal inspiration - bonus! Not to mention the bonus of getting to eat whatever you want whenever you want. If you're alone, who's going to judge you for eating brownies for breakfast, like I shamelessly did this morning?

3. Have a pamper day. With no obligations or places to be, you have plenty of time to do your nails - base coat, color, top coat, and shine coat for once - and put on your awkward lime-green aloe face mask that makes you look like an alien. Try out some new products, practice new makeup looks, and mix and match clothes to create new combinations!

4. Be productive. Get some work done, write some blog posts, meal prep for the week, finish a book you've been trying to get through, whatever! With no one around to distract you, you can totally immerse yourself in whatever you're doing. On my alone days, I can knock out several hours of work and writing without even thinking about it.

5. Have dates with yourself. Every Tuesday and Thursday night that I don't have plans, I watch a new movie, documentary, or TV episode I've never seen before, and every Sunday I read magazines and catch up on the blogs I follow. I love these times of quiet peace and I really do look forward to them all week.

6. Avoid social media if you're prone to FOMO. Just because your cousin is at a party and your high school friend is on a date doesn't mean you have to feel less than. Having your alone time is healthy, fun, and rejuvenating, and you're just as exciting a person if you're in bed watching Chopped on Thirsty Thursday while your college friend is getting wasted at a Taylor Swift concert. You're not missing anything, I promise.

7. If you still end up feeling lonely, no problem. Go out for coffee, get take-out from your favorite restaurant, go to Target, take a walk in the park, whatever. Even if you aren't interacting with the other people there, it can still help just to be around some hustle and bustle for a little while when you're feeling a little too isolated.

With social media being as popular as it is, everyone's trying to make it seem like their lives are exciting and cool all the time. The truth is that we all have our quiet time alone whether we like it or not, and in moderation it definitely isn't a bad thing. Spoil yourself, take some time to do the things you've been too busy to do lately, and enjoy the comfortable peace of being alone. Next time you're rushing from one social engagement to another, you might miss this!

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