Sometimes it scares me that I like to be alone so much. Sometimes it concerns me that I have a hard time when others are around, that my mood drastically changes in the presence of others. Is this what it’s like to be an introvert? A highly sensitive introvert? A highly sensitive introvert in a world of extroverts? Hmm.
I don’t think liking to be by myself is a bad thing, but I think it’s a bad thing if I can’t adapt to being with others. Sometimes I wonder why I don’t crave people, why I don’t crave that community? Life is all about people, right? Community and connections and relationships. At least, that’s what pastor Dan always says (and churches in general, and people in general, and life in general). But if life is such a social thing, why do I prefer to be alone?
It’s weird to me that some of my best moments and memories have been by myself. It kinda makes me happy though. There are some things that have happened that no one else knows about and no one else will ever know about. They were moments that were meant for me and only me and I feel special knowing that it was a unique, personal experience. Moments with God, moments on my yoga mat, moments in nature. Moments when I was depressed, moments laying in bed during treatment, moments when I literally had to pep talk myself into doing something I was scared of. But I did it, I did all of those things. By myself, I might add. Emotions and experiences all by myself. I am my own best friend.
I suppose that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Some people can’t stand to be by themselves and I feel sorry for them. I have spent so long trying to figure out who I am and now that I finally have a grasp on it, I like who I am. I want to be around myself because I have worked so hard shaping myself into the person I want to be around. Truth is, you have to be around yourself forever so the sooner you start liking yourself, the better. There’s no getting rid of ya.
there is you and you.
this is a relationship.
this is the most important relationship.
Nayirarah Waheed wrote this poem and I absolutely love it. It speaks truth, like all of her work so beautifully does. You and you is a relationship. You and you is the most important relationship. We spend so much time trying to create and strengthen relationships with others, but why don’t we work on creating and strengthening the relationship with ourselves? It takes just as much time and effort as any relationship does but hear me on this one: it’s worth it. The time spent is worth it. The effort spent is worth it. YOU are worth it.
So take yourself on a date. Explore your hobbies. Figure out what YOU like and what you “like” because everyone else likes it. Buy yourself a milkshake, or a bath bomb, or a book. Sit at a coffee shop all day. Sit on a mountain top all day. I don’t really care what you do, but do something. You deserve to spend time with yourself.
Think about when you start dating someone new. You want to know everythinggggg about them. Now do that with yourself. Find out who you truly are and then seek out things that support and honor that person. Things will change after you start “dating” yourself. You’ll see that some people in your life are not good for you, so off they go. Some things you spend so much time doing really aren’t getting you any closer to your goals so to the trash they go. The clothes you wear, the music you listen to, the environment you surround yourself with: do you even like these things? If not, why do you do them? Why do you force yourself to be someone you’re not?
I’m at the place where I know myself so well. I know what things make me happy and what things don’t. I know the type of people I want to be friends with and the people I need to keep my distance from. I’ve accepted that I’m an introvert, I’m creative, I’m outdoorsy, I’m sensitive. I’ve accepted that I’m complicated, I’m moody, I’m strong-willed, I’m a morning person. These sound like little things but they are the things that make up ME. I can’t change them, nor do I want to. I may not be like everyone else but I’m at the point where I don’t really care. I remember I used to care so much about what people thought of me. I would cover my face in makeup and spend so much money on clothes and I was highly affected by other people’s opinions. But now? I wear what I want. I barely wear makeup. I’m proud of my freckles. I know that I am so much more than what I look like. You can’t tell anything by what someone looks like. I’m confident in WHO I am as a person rather than WHAT I look like and let me tell ya, it’s been a beautiful transformation. And I only hope that happens for you too. Because remember:
You’re worth it. You deserve it. You’re unique and awesome and the world needs you to be authentically YOU.
Kbye I’m taking myself out on a date!