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 now for almost a decade and I wouldn't have it any other way. Despite this fact I'm known as being an extroverted person, but the truth is I'm actually introverted; I am quite happy on my own, with my own thoughts. I'm happy living alone!
I live alone, but that doesn't mean I am alone. I have family, friends (many long distance now as I moved) and a long-term partner that has been long-distance for well 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, mind you, some of what I say may help loneliness too.
Years ago a work colleague said to me when I was getting over a broken heart "Debbie, you need to fall in love with you, when you fall in love with yourself you will be happy". At the time I didn't really know what he meant. I do now. You see at the time I was looking outside for my happiness. When all along my happiness 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 50's 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.
What I love about living alone is that 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 terribly 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.
Did I always feel like this? No, of course not! There were many years of my life that I wished for that security of having a full time partner living with me, but the truth is 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.
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.
BRING PEOPLE INSIDE
Have dinner parties, afternoon tea parties and fundraising parties. Invite people into your home, it will give it a positive energy and a feeling that it is a place of love.
YOU CAN'T BE ALONE IF YOU HAVE PETS
In my case I have goldfish and plenty of native birds that come to the back garden. I also have my neighbour's dog and my daughter's dog, Bundy, has a sleepover sometimes. I am seriously thinking of getting a little dog however. If you have a pet you are not alone. That's Bundy making himself at home on my bed!
It's always best for peace of mind, especially at night to make sure your home is safe so always check the doors and windows prior to going to bed. Sometimes, I have to house sit for my brother who lives in a three storey pole house on a huge hill. It takes 50 steps to get to the first veranda. That can be scary when I'm there by myself. He has an alarm for being away, and one for night. I always put that alarm on then I have a restful sleep as I know I'm safe.
On that note, I don't really remember any time that I've been scared living on my own. But if you are a nervous type person you can always leave a light on, have your phone next to your bed, install a DIY alarm, and as my dad has always done - has a Hurley stick next to his bed! And still does, despite I doubt he could even swing it now.
BE YOUR OWN HANDY PERSON
I've had to learn to do so many fix it things by myself and each time I do I feel a great sense of satisfaction. I've taught myself to put furniture together, fix leaks, build garden beds and much more. Sure, I've had to undo a lot of my work because I did it wrong and do it again, but once you learn from your mistakes you don't do it again. I put my bed base together by myself and also the mattress that came in a box, it's a Sleeping Duck and rather a lot of work for one person to do on their own, but I did it!
As I write this post, it's time for me to get off the computer now because I have to hop in the car and take myself on a day trip to write another story for my NSW Australia tourism and lifestyle blog, and I have the freedom to that! I have the freedom to do whatever I feel like!
Below is one of the photos I've taken on my many solo trips exploring.