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Wanting to Spend Time Alone Is Normal and It's Totally Okay

Self-care is different from being selfish.
Wanting to Spend Time Alone Is Normal and It's Totally Okay
IMAGE INSTAGRAM/oliviapalermo
Self-care is different from being selfish.

There are moments when you'd rather spend your time in bed and let it be one of those do-nothing days. Sometimes you'd even tell a little white lie to your friends, claiming that you're sick or that you've got a family event to attend to, in order to get out of your planned night out. This may bring the people around you to feel worried, or worse, hurt for thinking you don't want to spend time with them. As a result, you guiltily get out of bed and force yourself to enjoy the activities they had planned.

Well, contrary to what they might say, it's perfectly normal to want to be alone. In fact, it's empowering, even. No, you're not being anti-social. And no, you're not being selfish or becoming a tita. You're simply choosing to take better care of yourself by deciding not to give in to peer pressure. Here are some things you gain from spending some time alone:

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1. You find your own voice. 

Today, it's difficult to know and differentiate your real opinion from those that you read, hear, or see. With time spent on your own, you are alone with your inner voice thus enabling you to contemplate and form your own opinion on certain matters.

As explained by psychiatrist Dr. Abigail Brenner, "Learning to be alone may be initially scary but once mastered, [it] serves as the cornerstone for your development and growth as a human being. There’s so much to be gained from learning to rely, and more importantly, to trust your own inner voice as the best source for your own guidance."

2. You get to create. 

Comfortable in your own space, there's nothing else to do but to produce and to surface your artistic side. You're more focused, or perhaps experience getting lost in your craft as you fear no watchful eyes on you. The lack of audience lets you drop your inhibitions and strip you off of your nerves letting you come up with something that is pure and true. 

3. You challenge yourself to go out of your comfort zone.

It is part of human nature to be social and to depend on other people. Though it is normal, you're also teaching yourself not be comfortable to be by yourself. Which is why simple activities like going to the movies or to eat in a restaurant on your own seem to be such a daunting task. This happens when you're not comfortable to be left alone with your thoughts. 

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4. You learn to rely and trust yourself more. 

That being said, spending time alone lets you exercise independent reasoning and decision-making. 

Dr. Abigail weighs in that "being alone allows you to drop your social guard, thus giving you the freedom to be introspective, to think for yourself. You may be able to make better choices and decisions about who you are and what you want without outside influence. Often, we are swayed by the thoughts, feelings, attitudes, beliefs, and behavior of those in our immediate sphere. Of course, you may ask others for their advice and opinions but ultimately, consulting yourself and making up your own mind about what you want to do will lead you into the life that’s best for you."

5. You become a better company. 

We all have different ways of recovering, recuperating, and re-centering ourselves. Don't force yourself to constantly be surrounded by people just because of social dictates. Chances are, you'll end up being a buzzkill or a party pooper. By giving yourself some much needed "me time" to find peace and relaxation within you, you become a more fun and pleasing person to be around with. 

Above all, Remember that being alone doesn't mean you're lonely, and that self-care does not equal selfishness.

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