Appreciating the beauty of being alone, while the silence is there

appreciating being alone

Being alone is something that many of us dread. As a freelance copywriter, I spend hours alone. I tap away at my keyboard, occasionally say “Hello” to one of the cats, and then continue completing my projects (this month: car rental and cannabis oil. I wouldn’t recommend combining the two in real life).

My recent holiday to Orlando overlapped with my partner’s trip to Montreal. While my adventure involved theme parks and too much American food (my stomach is still recovering) his required attending conferences. Don’t feel too sorry for him, there were steak and cigar bars involved along the way.

For the first two days after landing back from Orlando, I failed to appreciate the beauty of having alone time. A week in the sun with an 11-year-old girl and very little adult conversation has the propensity to drive one crazy. When you arrive home to an empty house and a partner who is four hours behind in terms of time zones, you feel fidgety, neglected, and bored.

It isn’t until today, the day he actually lands back, that I am appreciating the beauty of spending time alone. If you’re on the precipice of a few wonderful days of solitude yourself, here are some of their benefits:

Spending time alone means you can indulge in your own weird habits

spending time alone
CC: Elena Cordery at Unsplash

When you live with another person, you have to make sacrifices. Not just you personally, but both of you.

From time-to-time, you may crave the urge to go back to your weird habits. For example, I love to eat chocolate in bed. My partner finds that a little grubby.

If you have a burst of alone time coming up, re-invest in the weird habits you can’t indulge in when others are around. Forget to empty the cafetiere at night so it’s fresh for the next morning. Meditate wherever the hell you want. Eat in bed. This is the time to revisit the odd little things that make you, well, odd.

Now’s the time to get yourself together

Spending time alone
CC: Jess Watters

Aside from having the chance to act a little weird, spending time alone means you have at least a few hours to dedicate towards getting yourself together. Is your house crumbling around you due to hoarding? Now’s the time to organise it.

Or, maybe you’re doing as I have been doing for the last few months: considering a serious career shift. Spending time alone means you can sit down and determine why you want to change careers, what you need to do to get there, and how long it’ll take.

Other ways to get yourself together include:

  • Creating a household budget. Especially if you’ve just moved in with someone.
  • Figuring out whether you can make your bills go lower using price comparison tools.
  • Producing the perfect travel plan that you may or may not ever fulfil.
  • De-cluttering and creating the perfect minimalist space.
  • Planning how your days will go, especially if you’re a disorganised freelance copywriter

When you’re not facing the distractions that come with having a whole other person in your face, spending time alone to get your sh*t together feels liberating.

If you’re a freelance copywriter, work suddenly goes much faster

Spending time alone
CC: Martin Bjork

As a freelance copywriter, I often find it difficult not to succumb to the distractions around me. My daughter likes to shout “Yeetus” at random down her phone to her friends. I then spend ten minutes wondering what or who “Yeetus” is, before returning to work.

Or, if my other half comes and sits next to me, everything falls to pot. From bizarre conversations about Kanye West to, well, you know…there’s a whole world of distractions there.

Spending time alone usually means you’re happy to let other stuff pile up around you. Once again, that can make your efforts as a freelance copywriter go much, much faster. Who cares if the cats’ spirulina-infused biscuits are scattered across the kitchen floor? (Seriously, that’s what they eat). You can carry on writing.

Spending time alone also provides essential meditation moments

Spending time alone
CC: Simon Migaj at Unsplash

Meditation isn’t really something I do enough of. It’s both restorative and prophylactic, which is why I need more time to do it. On the days where I do manage to squeeze in 10 precious minutes a day, I am calmer and my work becomes better.

As a bonus, I can meditate wherever I want. And, I can execute the weird set of bed-friendly yoga poses I found via Pinterest last year. When my foot isn’t about to land in anyone’s face as they sleep off the effects of their latest night shift, all of that twisting and turning feels much less awkward.

You can become the most productive version of yourself

Spending time alone
CC: STIL at Unsplash

Do not use spending time alone as an excuse to wallow. I mean, where is all of that thinking going to get you? Nowhere. Not when actually doing something brings you closer to results.

Always remember, that done is better than perfect. If you’re a freelance copywriter too, you can start piling those words onto a page and then go back to tweak them later. Your clients will thank you for meeting your deadlines, and you’ll thank yourself for not feeling rushed.

So, fellow copywriters, don’t feel sad when you’re spending time alone. Seize the chance to be weird, execute a little independence, and consider doing some work.

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