Many wonderful people have spent most of their lives living alone, and loving it. For others, it may be a new experience, and a daunting one at that. Learning to live on your own in the Silver Street Stage, can be both terrifying, and liberating.
The trick is to recognise the situation for what it is. You may be recently divorced, or widowed, or chosen to live on your own. People do choose this option and we can learn from them, but for those who have had the new found ‘alone liver’ thrust upon them, some guidelines to help you adjust.
- Time. Your constant companion. Living alone, you will face hours of it to deal with. If you have been in a relationship, the sharing now becomes the … me. It can be overwhelming, frightening and well, incredibly lonely. But recognise the difference between being alone and being lonely. You need to fill that time constructively or the hours will envelope you with melancholy.
- Never see singleness as a failure. Circumstances may have put you there. You may have been the centre of another’s universe, and now … the chickens have flown, the dearly beloved is no more and you have to fill … oh that time thing again … but see yourself simply as starting a new chapter, and not ending too many.
- Put yourself in good company. Some of the greatest spent all their time living alone. Preferring to do so.
- Eat, drink and be merry. You still have a place at the table not so? Make a meal of it.
- Turn the simplest activities into glorious events. Luxurious baths, writing in your journal, planning your trips and new things to do.
- Respect your space. It’s yours now to change as you want into a home that will hug you.
- Go out, go out and go out to discover.
- Entertain. Sometimes you may not feel up to it, but the you has not changed, just your circumstances.
- Find your voice. Share your experience with others who may feel lost living alone at this stage. There is a novel in you yet.
- Develop your interests. Go dig, go map, go foster and choose one new thing you never thought you would. The greatest writers, painters and designers would never have succeeded amongst the many.
When you suddenly find yourself living alone at this stage of your life, all sorts of feelings rise to the surface and it’s ok – vent, get angry, rage at the gods, and then realise that this is not a sentence but simply another stage in your life. You have the experience to cope, a bed to stretch out in, a timetable of your own making. There will be times when being all by yourself is just too much, and that is fine too, but when you do feel lost, wait for the morning … even the sun lives alone and look how she shines when given the chance.
Image bayside journal.