I remember the hell of being alone in my house after separating from my ex-partner. In the silence, my footsteps echoed and painful memories of happier times lurked around every corner. For the first couple months, I struggled through each day, feeling as though I needed to be propped up by my supportive friends and family. I desperately filled every waking moment with some kind of activity to help me forget my Alone Status.
Thankfully, that phase ended after a few months. I’ve come to love my home, and I now savor my precious Alone Time. Here’s how you can too:
1. Claim your space.
If your ex previously shared your living space, you’ll want to reclaim your home as your own. You might opt for a spiritual blessing or smudge ceremony to clear out some of the negative energy and start fresh. Then it’s time for a makeover, and a good place to start is your bedroom. Crisp new sheets will feel wonderful against your skin and symbolize the newness that now envelops you. You might choose to move your bed and/or paint the walls. Continue this trend throughout the rest of your home. Buy some new plants, hang different curtains and rearrange the furniture. Shed that which carries too many old memories and surround yourself with things you love. It doesn’t have to be an expensive process, many treasures can be found in thrift stores. One caution: don’t change too much too fast as it may be upsetting for your children. When possible, involve them in the process of redecorating so they too can feel a sense of ownership in the renewed space.
2. Make peace with the silence.
Silence can be loud and even terrifying. In the absence of external noise, we are confronted with our circumstances and our thoughts. But that doesn’t have to be a bad thing. A few minutes of daily meditation can help you relax and feel centered, and you don’t have to do anything fancy. To start, set a timer for about three minutes and then sit quietly and concentrate on your breathing. This practice will help you to find peace within yourself. Eventually, you’ll learn to tune into the music of your soul instead of feeling overwhelmed by external factors.
3. Work your To-Do List.
Be sure to maintain a list of Things To Do When You’re Alone, because chances are you’ll think of many activities during times when you’re not a lone. A hectic evening might leave you longing for a bubble bath. Spilled milk could suggest it’s time to shampoo the carpets. Perhaps a conversation with a friend will remind you of a book you’d like to read. When the time comes, refer to your list and get busy.
4. Embrace a passion.
Your time alone affords you a wonderful opportunity to grow and develop your talents. Whether you’re a reader, writer, painter or kick boxer, you now have time to devote to your passion. Enroll in a class or join a club. Set aside some time to practice doing what you love.
5. Take yourself out on a date.
Is there a movie or a show you’d like to see? How about a restaurant you’d like to try? Why not go alone? Dress up a little, hold your head high and take yourself (and, perhaps a good book) out on the town. Without a partner to entertain, you can fully savor every bite of your meal, and laugh or cry as loud as you want in the theater. Feel free to strike up conversations with strangers, or do your best to remain mysterious and pretend you don’t speak English. Let go and have fun!