Moving out. It’s exciting and scary at the same time. At least it was for me. I was excited to be able to be on my own but I was also a bit nervous. I have always been someone who likes to spend time alone therefore living alone wasn’t something that seemed too scary; I was actually looking forward to it. I also wasn’t afraid about maintaining my own money and staying on budget, because I have always been very careful and strict with my money. Thus I wasn’t worried about it.
I grew up in house that was filled with life, there really wasn’t a quiet moment ever. In our house lived my family that includes my younger sister and brother as well as my parents and our dog. And top of that our house always has guests over; friends and family. There rarely was a quite moment in our house and that’s why for me the silence was the biggest difference. It was something I wasn’t used to and sometimes it made me feel alone.
In this short time I have gotten to known myself better and I have gained confidence and become more independent. And I love that feeling of being in total control of everything. I love that I can do things whenever I want, that I can arrange everything just as I like it, that I can watch what I want and if I like I can even walk around naked and no one cares. I do recommend closing the curtains if you do this, otherwise you will give your neighbours quite a show. But still even for someone who likes to be alone things can get quite overwhelming sometimes and you can feel lonely. This has happened to me; usually when I am having a bad day or I am sick and feeling lonely. And it’s not a nice feeling, but I have found things and tricks that prevent me from feeling lonely while I am alone.
So I want to share with you how I avoid feeling lonely. I hope these five tips helps you and give you an idea of what you can do to avoid feeling lonely.
- Create a routine
Since I am not currently working or going to school regularly it can be tempting to be up all night and sleep late. So I have created myself some routines that I have found really helpful. I have both morning and evening rituals as well as Sunday routines. These routines help me to get things done and the one routine I have foundto be the most important one is my morning one. It really helps me to wake up and get ready for the day.
These routines can include what ever you want. For example my morning rituals are things I like to do before I start to exercise, work or what ever it is that I am doing that day. And I try to do it everyday, whether I’m just staying home or if I’m going to work. Having a routine gives me a sense of control and it’s also a nice way to start the day; to give you some me time. My Sunday ritual is a bit different; I like to spend the day home and prepare for the coming week. I clean, make to-do lists, plan my meals and usually do some kind of pamper routine. This way I feel that I have everything together and I am ready for a new week I seriously wouldn’t be able to function whit out my calendar and lists.
- Get a pet
Living alone is great but even when you are someone who likes being alone sometimes being constantly alone can make you feel lonely, and it’s understandable. Humans are social creatures and we crave for company. What I have found extremely helpful is to take our family dog Routa, to my place. Having him at the apartment also forces me to leave the house and get some fresh air, which is good because sometimes when you have no errands to run or meetings you can forget to go outside and end up spending the whole day indoors. I can’t speak for everyone but for me spending days inside makes me sleepy and angry and anxious so it’s good to have someone who makes you to take care of yourself even if it is the way that you are taking care of someone else. Of course you have to remember that getting a pet is a huge responsibility that takes time and money and there is lot to think about before getting one. Other option is that if your friends or family have pets you can ask if you could to take care of them for a while or offer to watch over them when they are out of town. I am recommending this because for me having our dog at my place has been a huge help when it comes feeling lonely.
3. Actively do things
One of the most efficient ways to prevent feeling lonely is just to do things. Because when you keep yourself busy you don’t have time to feel lonely: pick up a new hobby, try painting or sign up for a dance class.
Living alone can be a great opportunity to try new things you otherwise wouldn’t. If you don’t feel like trying new things that’s perfectly fine. Actively doing things doesn’t necessarily mean that you should constantly do new things, by it I also mean you should try to go to places where there are people. Just being surrounded by others can make you feel less lonely. For example when I have been alone in my flat for a few days I usually go out to a cofeeshop, or gym or I go have lunch somewhere because it makes me feel less lonely. I find it relaxing to watch people and just listen people talk. It gives me energy to be alone. Sometime I also love doing is photographing. I love going out with my camera and taking photos of the surrounding world as well as I love to arrange actual photo shoots with my friends.
4. Call people and make plans
When you live alone it can be harder to make plans and see friends and family because there might be a bigger distance or you don’t go to the same school anymore or something along those lines. Especially if you are someone who works from home, or isn’t in school or you regularly just don’t go to places that you can meet people it’s important that you pick up the phone and call your friends. Many of my friends have busy lives: they work, are dating, are in school or live far away so the time when we see each other is limited. We text of course but it’s not the same than seeing each other as person. So we arrange dates where we go to have lunch or visit each other or just have quick coffee so we can actually look each other when we talk. And with those friends who live hours away we usually schedule Skype call or face time so we can actually see each other’s faces. Fortunately I have very a active friend group who wants to spend time together which makes it easier to arrange these meetings. For example we have this group from high school and we see each other usually once in a month at someone’s flat where we catch up, or watch a movie and drink coffee. After all these dates I have a new kind of energy that helps me to do things.
- Have an emergency kit
You may think what the hell I am talking about? Emergency kit? I don’t mean Band-Aid or painkillers but things that you know will make you feel better if you are having acrappy day. When you have this emergency kit in you house you can dig it up whenever you are feeling lonely and it will make you feel a bit better. My emergency kit has all ten season of friends because they will make me feel better no matter what, one of the Harry Potter books, a few movies, some chocolate, magazines, my first stuffed animal, wine and tea. I don’t necessarily use all of them at the same time, sometimes I read and drink tea and other times I watch movies and have some chocolate and wine. Just having the emergency kit around and knowing it exist makes me feel prepared and better.
That’s it! These are my five tips how to avoid feeling lonely. If you have any tips how you deal with being lonely let me know at the comments!