So, I’m here to help. I’m here to share my top ten tips for living alone, just to help my fellow loners out a little.
These ten things have helped me through a hell of a lot of rainy evenings and long weekends.
- FIND A HOT DRINK THAT MAKES YOU HAPPY. Okay so I know a lot of you like coffee. I don’t like coffee so I can’t really talk about it too much BUT, I’m not sure that coffee would work here. I guess it might work in the morning, or if you drink decaf, or whatever… Anyway, find a hot drink that warms your soul as well as your body. I’m a massive tea drinker and have both normal and decaff tea on hand at all times. When I’m feeling a little cold and lonely I pop the kettle on and bam, problem kinda solved.
- EXERCISE. Exercise always makes it onto these lists, doesn’t it? I’m the least sporty person in existence and even I recognise the good that a decent run does for me when I’m feeling down. It gets me out of the house, into some fresh air, and gets the endorphins pumping. It also helps you sleep better which is just what you need when the evenings feel long and lonely. Sleep solves all your problems.
- NETFLIX. I’m one of those awful people who always has TV on in the background. I prefer having TV on to music (although at the moment I’m still in a post-Mumford & Sons buzz…). Even if I have the window minimised, just the sound of voices is enough to keep the silence away. Perfect for having on the background while you take those all important insta shots of your tea and biscuits. N.B. I’ve been obsessed with audio books lately so if Netflix isn’t for you, try out an audio book or two!
- KEEP YOUR SPACE RELATIVELY TIDY. I’m not a messy person – not in a gross way anyway – but I’m not a tidy person either. Something I’ve learnt this year is that everything feel just a little bit better if you’re not wading through clutter to get to the other side of the room. Because I spend so much time at home, alone, it’s so important that my space is comfortable. Tidy minds and all that.
- FEED YOURSELF PROPERLY. The temptation when you live alone is just to eat a lot of quick food because there’s no one there to judge you and making dinner, eating it, and then washing it up is just so unappealing. I can tell you this for free: don’t. Make sure you’re eating properly. I went through a week of pot noodles and by the end I was so run down and exhausted that I could barely get to school in the morning. Look after your body, even if it’s a pain in the arse.
- FRESH FLOWERS. Every Sunday morning I head up to the Place Monge market to spend no more than 10€ on a bunch of flowers. It gets me up on a quiet Sunday and gets me out of the house, into sleepy Sunday Paris, and I get something pretty out of it too (and a fresh set of blog photo props…). I like having something alive with me in the flat. Flowers are perfect for brightening the place up and for keeping the air fresh and happy!
- ROUTINE. I can’t stress enough how important finding yourself a routine is for beating loneliness. I am awake by 8h every morning, rain or shine, school or no school. On Sundays I go to the market. On school days I do my makeup while I wait for the kettle to boil. I get dressed at 20 past the hour. I do my food shopping on a Monday afternoon on my way back from the Louvre. Keep your mind working and engaged in the important tasks, no matter how small. It’ll help.
- DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP. For a long time I didn’t like people knowing that I was lonely. I lived in the most beautiful city in the world (maybe) and was living the dream. That doesn’t mean that I was happy though. I can remember a two-week period back in November where I didn’t leave the house for two weeks, but told everyone I had and that Paris was great. It was awful. I felt awful. It wasn’t until I realised that it wasn’t going to get better my way that I began to sort it out. I told people I was lonely and it immediately left me feeling less lonely. Don’t shut people out.
- LEAVE THE HOUSE OCCASIONALLY. SEE PEOPLE. Obviously for some of you this is easier said than done and that’s chill. We cool. I’m a raging introvert so I feel ya. What does help, however, is changing your surroundings once in a while. Meet a friend for coffee or a movie. Go for lunch or climb the Eiffel Tower (okay, maybe that example was a little too personal to me). Break up the time you actually spend at home and treat yourself to something delicious. You’ve earned it.
- ENJOY IT. Living alone is wonderful. No one is there pissing you off by not cleaning up after themselves, no one is making weird noises at 2am, no one expects you to sit and watch TV with them even though you have work to do. Living alone is a blessing in disguise. Lonely at times, I wouldn’t change it for all the tea in China.
Do you have any tips for living alone?
Do you like to have TV on in the background, or do you have to physically watch it?