Updated: Aug 16
Does it terrify you to live alone? Do you ever wonder if you could be happy living alone? Is it really that scary, especially as you get older? Well, no, it's not!
I have lived alone for almost a decade and wouldn't have it any other way. Despite this fact, I'm known as an extrovert, but the truth is I'm introverted; I am pretty happy on my own with my thoughts. I'm so glad to be living alone!
I live alone, but that doesn't mean I am alone. I have family, friends (many long distances now as I moved) and a long-term partner who has been long-distance for over a decade. We see each other 2-3 times a month. So I have people in my life, and this post is about actually living alone, not about being lonely.
Years ago, a work colleague said to me when I was getting over a broken heart, "Debbie, you need to fall in love with yourself; when you fall in love with yourself, you will be happy". At the time, I didn't know what he meant. I do now. I was looking outside for my happiness. When all along, my joy was always here inside of me. Yes, that's me above, on one of my many bush walks that I do alone to be with nature.
Many people feel that living alone would be a sad existence. It's not! However, let me point out I'm in my 60s now, and my words may not resonate so much with younger people who still crave to have a family. I've had my family and that experience. It's my own choice to live alone; I made the decision.
I love living alone because I don't have to answer to anybody. I can do what I want when I want and whenever I want. I don't have to cook for anyone, clean for anyone, or watch TV shows that don't interest me. I know this sounds selfish, and it probably is, but it makes me happy living alone. It also gives me the freedom to be the part-time carer for my dad, who is going downhill with Dementia, but that's the next post; dealing with an ailing parent. (Update: dad passed in September 2019).
Did I always feel like this? No, of course not! For many years, I wished for that security of having a full-time partner living with me. Still, I accepted that I was happy living on my own. It gives me so much freedom. I do have people question me about it, and they almost look at me with pity, that I spend most nights alone, not realising that this is my choice. Of course, now, with social media, we are never alone; there's always somebody to chat to on Facebook or Instagram.
Here are my tips on being happy living alone.
YOUR HOME IS YOUR SANTUARY
What I mean by that is don't be a recluse and don't live in a house shut off from the world. Open the curtains, open the doors, grow plants in the garden, windowsill or on the balcony. Get your creative mind at work and decorate and make your home your sanctuary. Keep your home smelling divine with diffusers and essences. (affiliate link)
Even if you rent take great pride in where you live and make it your special place in the world. This is your special space.