Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Why Spending Some Alone Time is Good For You

My trusty little pink notebook? Check. Multi-colored pens? Check. That paperback book that’s been on my nightstand half-read forever? Check.

I close my eyes. Breathe in, breathe out. I’m alone.

And I smile.

I had another opportunity last night to hang out at this quaint little place called Press Café over at the new Promenade in Greenhills. I’ve always loved Fully Booked, and I think the idea of opening up a book-themed café filled with the smell of books around me is just absolutely brilliant.

I’ve been overwhelmed with fertility treatments, new clients, and article deadlines for the past month. It’s been a long while since I had some quiet quality time to myself. And last night, I rewarded myself by snuggling in the corner of a cozy café with only my own thoughts as my companions.

Two hours is simply not enough.

Why It’s Awesome to Have Some Therapeutic “Me Time” Every Once in a While

1. Slow down. Recharge. Repeat.

Back when I was still in college, my favorite haunt was the university library. It was the only place in campus where I felt truly at home. It was my sanctuary, and I always spent hours trying to slow down and recharge for the next hurdle to come. I mean, I loved hanging out with my pals—don’t get me wrong. But there was just something about the library that always made me feel content, like I had been away too long and it was calling me home.

It was healthy. After graduation, I found less and less time to myself and more and more time trying to be an “adult”. Work came first, of course. But now that I’m married, older, and hopefully wiser, I’ve realized just how important it is to slow down and not be in such a hurry all the time. We all need to chill, and spending some time alone is the perfect way to do that.

2. Hi, thoughts. How’ve you been?

As a writer, my mind is often just a jumble of words trying to squeeze themselves into some semblance of coherence. I don’t mind, really; I love those random words hanging out in there. It’s just that it’s hard to listen to them sometimes, especially when all I can think about are my responsibilities and bills and all the chores that need to be done. Being alone with my notebook and pen works wonders. I can reintroduce myself with my own thoughts, and finally find some peace and quiet.

3. The Creativity and Efficiency Machine

Being alone eliminates all my distractions. It boosts creativity and helps me set my priorities. I was able to write down all my plot outlines last night and so much more.  And since there’s really no one to talk to when you’re alone, you’ll be able to keep your mind focused longer, too. Just remember to unplug when you’re alone. That’s right—no Facebook-ing or playing games on your tab!

4. Loving yourself

If you’re insecure when you’re out eating alone, give yourself a good slap and snap out of it. There is something liberating about being by yourself for a while. It ups your self-esteem and makes you less dependent on other people. You can do whatever you want and go wherever you want to go without worrying about other people. Plus, it’s really all about loving yourself. After all, if, you can’t have fun when you’re alone, how can you expect to live with yourself for the rest of your life, right?

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