Being alone is scary.
No other opener needed. Almost everyone can relate to this feeling. It’s the feeling you have when you get home from work or school to an empty house. If you have a spouse who is out of town, between ordering take out and turning on Netflix you imagine what your life would be without them. If you are unattached, you envision coming home to the same empty home in 10 years. Granted there are plenty of people who are perfectly happy and content in the here and now and in potentially being single in the future. To those people, more power to you! Whether it is because you were naturally born with this self-esteem and confidence or because your parents raised you to develop it, it is fabulous! However, for many people the latter is not something they can relate to. For some people, the fear of being alone is a regular and sometimes even daily struggle. For some people, it is almost a phobia. And it is no way to have to live your life.
Do Positive Things That Are Just About You
Another important point to remember in navigating this fear of being alone is to focus less on the fear and more on doing positive things for yourself. It can involve taking a class, joining a local volunteer group, or just exercising regularly. Integrating positive activities into your life has many benefits. On an emotional level, it is quite simple: you enjoy doing things you enjoy! The more positive things you do, the happier you will be. Also, there is a saying that I believe to be very true. It goes something like “You attract what you project”. So the more things you do that make you happy, the better the quality of person you will attract into your life if you are looking for friends or if you are single and do decide to date. Along these same lines, every time you engage in an activity you have an opportunity to meet new people and socialize. While one potential benefit of this is meeting a future partner, whether you are single or in a relationship you have the opportunity to increase your social supports. Whether you meet the man or woman of your dreams or not isn’t really the point. By trying new things or being more active with something you already like to do, you are able to meet new people. At times when your anxiety runs away with you, knowing you have a solid group of friends make those lonely nights seem a heck of a lot less lonely.
Manage Anxiety, Manage Your Fear of Being Alone
Learning to live your life without a fear about being alone is easier said than done. At times it takes a certain level of skill at managing anxiety. Ultimately that’s what the fear of being alone is, right? It is anxiety about the future and what it may hold. And how to we learn to manage anxiety? Well, the first place to start can often involve learning to relinquish the need for control of the future and replacing negative thought processes with more positive ones. The can be applied more generally. For example, exchanging “What do I do if my boss doesn’t like the proposal I submitted?” with “I have already submitted the proposal and at this point my boss’s reaction is out of my control”. It can also be applied specifically to anxieties about being alone. For example, replace “What do I do if I never find someone to be with?” with “I am living my life the way I want and attempting to be social. At some point, that’s all I can do. I can’t control whether I meet the love of my life or not”. If you learn to manage these thoughts and your subsequent anxiety better, you may find that you are less concerned about the future and what it holds for you. This will allow you to stay in a (much happier) here and now.