How To Be Happy Alone and Be Your Own Best Friend
For most of our lives, we’re inundated with romantic movies and storybooks that talk about finding our one true love. A lot of people grow up thinking that’s one of the most pressing concerns as an adult -- get married, buy a house, and live that “perfect” life.
The reality is, life just doesn’t work that way most of the time. While some people elect to be single, others have trouble finding the right partner (and you should always take your time looking).
PYM would like to help all of our single people out there learn how to be happy alone, so that you can be your own best friend.
Why Being Alone Is Important
Unfortunately, spending time alone or being alone is seen as a negative. If you’re alone, you’ve obviously done something wrong, right?
Not so fast!
Spending time alone is actually really good for you on an emotional level. It’s also important to note that being alone and feeling lonely really are two different things. When you spend time with yourself, you learn to understand yourself just a little bit better. You’ll also be able to let down your “social guard,” because you don’t have anyone to impress and you can really be yourself.
That’s not to say there is anything wrong with being in a relationship! Even for people in long-term, loving relationships, spending time alone can be a good thing. You’ll be able to miss each other, and you’ll have a better understanding of what makes you tick so that you can be a better, more emotionally stable partner.
Learn What Really Makes You Happy
One of the first and more important steps in your path toward becoming your own best friend is to take a little time to really learn what makes you happy. It can be fairly enlightening and sad to find out that a lot of the things that you do are because of or for other people. Where does that leave you?
Now is the time for self reflection. Try new things! You may find things that make you happy that you may never have thought of before. Be gentle with yourself during this process. It can be helpful to remember to speak to yourself like you would speak to a five year old version of yourself.
Step Away From Social Media
We have all seen exactly how problematic social media can be. While it isn’t all bad, it definitely fosters an environment that encourages comparison and self judgement.
While you’re working on learning more about yourself, taking a big step back from social media can be incredibly helpful. It also removes that easy to fall into pattern of just absentmindedly scrolling through your phone, which can not only make you feel bad about yourself but also take up time that you could be doing other, better things.
Start with 24 hours. It can be really helpful to actually delete any social media apps from your phone. That doesn’t mean that you can’t log in, but you’ll have to be more mindful about how, when, and why you do it.
Or you can take it one step further, and take time off from your whole phone. Read a book, take yourself out on a date, but fight the desire to be “connected” as much as you can. If you need a little help with the stress that stepping back can cause, try a PYM Mood Chew. It works on a biological level to fight off the signs of stress and help you be better able to deal with feeling overwhelmed.
Meditation Can Help
Meditation is about learning to live in a more mindful way. Where meditation is the practice, mindfulness is the reward.
When you practice meditation regularly, you’ll likely notice a significant decrease in your anxiety and depression. You may also see an improvement in how able you are to concentrate, and even have some physical benefits like lower blood pressure and an easier time sleeping.
All that you need to meditate is a quiet space and time by yourself. You’ll sit in a comfortable position (while some people may invest in a meditation pillow, it isn’t necessary), close or unfocus your eyes, and breathe. That’s it!
When thoughts pop up, and they will, acknowledge them and gently push them away. Stay for as long as you want, and be understanding if it’s not quite as easy as you think it should be.
Watch How You Talk To Yourself
The goal of all of this is being your own best friend, right? Part of that is making sure that you’re more aware of the way in which you talk to and about yourself.
Even when we’re not actively thinking about our thoughts, the brain is always engaged. That doesn’t mean that every single thought that you have is “true,” that’s the very definition of intrusive thinking. Being able to acknowledge and separate fact from fiction can help you start to turn around how you talk to yourself.
Negative self talk can be very damaging, and it doesn’t actually help you to be any “better.”
Try to think of it like talking to your actual best friend. Would you say the things you say to yourself, to them? If you wouldn’t, you probably shouldn’t say them to yourself either.
Start by acknowledging those thoughts, and turning them immediately around. You might not really feel that way at first, but your brain will learn.
Treating yourself as your own best friend is a skill everyone should learn. When you can better prioritize yourself, your self esteem will rise and you’ll be able to really stand up for what you deserve.
PYM would like to be part of your journey, and support you in the best way we know how… by helping you manage your stress and overwhelm as you work through anything that may be holding you back.