It’s crazy to think – but up to just a few months ago, I had been in relationships for the past 5+ years. I never saw myself as a serial monogamous. But here I was jumping from relationship to relationship without ever giving myself some space to breath. Some space to myself. Some space to learn to love myself without my partner’s praise. Some space to just simply enjoy the quiet moments of being on my own.
Taking a good look at the situation, this idea made absolutely no sense to me. Me? Not able to be by myself? How could it be? I was always the self-starting only child that loved spending time by herself. The solo traveler that had no problem traveling outside the country by herself. The brazen babe that’s gone to parties and events with just me, myself and I. And even have had no qualms about eating at a busy restaurant by myself.
But the fact of the matter was that it was true. I didn’t want to be by myself – alone without the companionship of a partner who loved me. A partner who would validate my worth because I didn’t believe I could do it on my own. How could I do anything that was creative, brave, exciting or groundbreaking – if I didn’t have a partner that could confirm for me that I was doing a good job, that I was on the right path, that my inner light was bright. All confirmations that were really meant to come from me, from my spirit.
So after my two consecutive relationships were ended for good, I’ve been in this space of contemplation – with an open heart willing to receive the lessons. I’ve been making a much more conscious effort to spend more time learning to love myself on my own. I’m still working on it but here are a few practices that have really help transform my tendency to stay in relationships because they feed my ego, not my truth:
Change Your Internal Conversation
If you find yourself having any kind of negative self-talk, (ie: “Ugh, why did I do that? I’m so stupid). Stop negativity dead in its tracks and replace with some encouraging words. For instance, I write a note in my iPhone the other day that said “You’re doing an amazing job. I love you. You’re a beautiful person doing beautiful things, keep going.” It may feel uncomfortable at first but it will help change your attitude towards yourself.
Take Yourself Out on Dates
Take a day to literally take yourself out to do something that you’ve been dying to do. Maybe it’s an exhibit you’ve wanted to see or a class you’ve wanted to take. Do it and then take yourself for a bite afterwards. It’s important to spend time by yourself and confirm that you make for great company! I have tons of more ideas in this post “Take Yourself Out on an Artist Date”.
Spend Time With Your Friends!
Yes, solitude is a great tool for centering and growth. But let’s be honest, there is nothing like getting together with the people that match your spirit and feel good to be around.
Resist the Urge to Fill the Space
Let’s face it. There may be moments when it may feel lonely on your search for self-love. And if they do arise, congrats! You are real & beautiful human! But I do encourage you, hold that luscious space that you are creating for yourself. Resist the urges that make you wanna fill the space with company that doesn’t match your spirit or may even be undeserving of your time – just to replicate a feeling.
Don’t get me wrong, there are many nights – where I want that feeling of companionship, that someone to hold me tight. But I’m healing and I’m learning to really know what it means to love being by yourself. My intuition keeps whispering to me “Now’s not the time, you have work to do.” I trust in that. While the inner work and realizations have been challenging for me, I am even more grateful for what I’ve been learning about myself and my truth. One of the biggest lessons being No one can tell you who are you and what you are capable of but YOU. There’s so much love in that.