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So, when I get home, the last thing I want to do is speak to people. Ideally, I would spend my entire evening alone with a book, or a TV show or a project. Every evening. Introverts are energised from being alone. Extroverts are energised from being with people.

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Some people are naturally happy alone. But for others, being solo is a challenge. Regardless of how you feel about being alone, building a good relationship with yourself is a worthy investment. After all, you do spend quite a bit of time with yourself, so you might as well learn to enjoy it. In fact, you look forward to it. Or maybe being alone just leaves you sad and longing for company. These tips are aimed at helping you get the ball rolling.

They might not transform your life overnight, but they can help you get more comfortable with being alone. Some of them may be exactly what you needed to hear. Others may not make sense for you. Use them as stepping-stones. Add to them and shape them along the way to suit your own lifestyle and personality. Remember, you really have no way of knowing if someone with a bunch of friends and a stuffed social calendar is actually happy. Not by a long shot. You have no idea if those people are truly happy or just giving the impression that they are. So, take a deep breath and put it in perspective.

Perform a test run and ban yourself from social media for 48 hours. If that makes a difference, try giving yourself a daily limit of 10 to 15 minutes and stick to it. Noticing a theme here? Cellphones and social media have undoubtedly changed the concept of being alone.

1. you’ll get to recharge.

Is anybody really alone when they can pick up their phone and text or call just about anyone? Or check in on what that high school acquaintance is up to without even having to talk to them?

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Use this time to reconnect with yourself and explore what it feels like to be truly alone. Not sure how to pass the time? Grab a pen and notepad, and jot down things you might enjoy doing the next time you find yourself alone. Does the thought of doing absolutely nothing unsettle you? Find a comfortable place to sit or lie down.

Close your eyes, darken the room, or stare out the window if you prefer. Let your mind wander — truly wander — and see where it takes you.

2. you’ll reflect more often.

With time, your mind will get used to this new freedom. They might sound cliche, but self-dates can be a powerful tool for learning how to be happy alone. Not sure what to do? Where would you take them? What would you want them to see or experience?

Now, take yourself on that date. Still sounds too daunting? Start small by sitting in a coffee shop for just 10 minutes. Be observant and soak in your surroundings. Exercise helps release endorphins, those neurotransmitters in your brain that can make you feel happier.

Increase your activity by a minute or two each day. As you gain confidence, try weight trainingaerobicsor sports. Yes, another cliche. But seriously, get outside.

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Lounge in the backyard, take a walk in the park, or hang out by the water. Absorb the sights, sounds, and smells of nature. Feel the breeze on your face. Research shows that 30 minutes or more a week spent in nature can improve symptoms of depression and lower blood pressure.

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Some people find it especially difficult to be happy while living alone. But living solo also has its perks naked vacuuming, anyone?

It might seem impossible, but you can be happy with yourself, even when you’re all alone.

Try to take advantage of the physical and mental space that comes with living alone:. There are so many ways to volunteer your time in service of others. You can volunteer in person or help out remotely from home. Either way, helping others can make you feel good.

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Plus, it can help you feel connected to others while still getting in some quality alone time. Research volunteer opportunities in your neighborhood. Research shows that gratefulness can boost feelings of happiness and hopefulness.

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They can be as simple as that first cup of java in the morning or song you play over and over because it calms your nerves. Make a list — mental or physical — of the things in your life that you appreciate. Self-reflection is a good thing.

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Harsh self-judgement is not. It eats away at your self-confidence and happiness. Remember the many good qualities you possess. No dinner companion? Prepare a fabulous meal for one. Set the table, use a cloth napkin, light a candle, and do whatever you would do if you were throwing a dinner party.

Being alone can make you happier

What have you always dreamed of doing, but have put off? The point is to try something new and different, to take a step outside your comfort zone. Take on a home improvement project. Learn to play an instrument, paint a landscape, or write a short story. Do it on your own or enroll in a class. Find interesting things to do and put them on your calendar.

Give yourself something to look forward to. After all, anticipation is half the fun. Plus, seeing it on your calendar might also help you follow through. Visit a nearby town and stay in a bed and breakfast. Attend a local festival or farmers market.

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As you become more comfortable with the day-to-day aspects of being alone, you can start digging a bit deeper. Even a routine that works well can eventually morph into a rut, leaving you uninspired. Think about your day-to-day routine and immediate surroundings. Freshen things up. Rearrange your furniture or paint a wall.

Start a garden, clean and declutter, or find a new coffee shop. Life has its stressorsand bad things happen. But remember that time something bad happened and you figured out how to deal with it? Consider how you coped then and why that worked. Think about how you can use that same mindset to cope with events that are happening now.

10 things that happen when you start to enjoy being alone

This is also a good time to give yourself some credit. As you become more comfortable being alone, you might find yourself spending less time socializing. Arrange to visit with someone in your family, a friend, or go hang out with the team after work. What does forgiveness have to do with your happiness? A lot, as it turns out. Among other health benefits, the act of forgiveness may reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. Forgiveness can take a load off your mind. Emotional health can affect physical health and vice versa.

Taking care of your physical health may help boost your overall happiness. Make eating a balanced dietexercising regularlyand getting plenty of sleep part of what you do with your alone time. Be sure to get an annual physical, and see your doctor to manage any preexisting health conditions.

Where do you want to be in 5 years or in 10 years, both personally and professionally?