twenty ways to spend time alone

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Sometimes you just need a little 'me time'. I live alone and have absolutely mastered the sofa and box set combo, but there are an array of other options to keep you feeling energised, relaxed, creative... it's finding those little things that make your soul shine, and fitting them into your day whenever you can.

A W A Y  F R O M  P E O P L E

o n e - go for a walk

...heading outside for a little fresh air does more for your mentality than you'd think. If you can find an area of greenery to roam, like a country road, a park, or just beneath some trees down an NYC street then it'll lift your mood even more. You can absolutely find more quiet, secluded spots away from crowds to roam at your own leisurely pace - or head out much earlier in the day; life is always much quieter first thing in the morning.

t w o - cook a new dish or your favourite dish 

...I love trying new dishes, and lately I've been making some fabulous authentic Asian foods. If you want to try a simple, healthy but cosy dish, a miso noodle soup is my current favourite (boiling water, miso paste, a dash of soy sauce, green veggies of choice, spring onion/scallion, optional mushrooms, simmer for 20 minutes, add cooked noodles, eat. I like to add a tsp of sesame seeds too). You can find endless inspiration on Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, or even TikTok.

t h r e e - read a book 

...I'm all for getting lost in a good book, especially one that re-awakens my imagination. If you're not sure which book to pick up, aim for one of your favourites, it'll bring back happy nostalgia - and you may find hidden details you missed on the first (or second) read. Personally I love re-reading Garth Nix's Old Kingdom series. If you're looking for something new to read, there's an amazing bookstagram niche on Instagram, with readers sharing reviews of so many books and covering so many genres.

f o u r - take a relaxing bath can even combine this with reading a book, or listening to some music. If meditation is your thing, relaxing in hot water will really help those troubles and stresses melt away. Close the bathroom door, light some candles, throw in some flower petals, add some sea salts, or even try a milk bath - you can make your bath as simple or as fancy as you like.

f i v e - catch up on your favourite shows

...we're all guilty of a movie or box set binge every now and again, but sometimes you just need that relaxation day on the sofa where it's just you and your favourite show - especially when it's raining outside and you can cosy up with a blanket or two.

s i x - re-organise your room

...every now and again I find myself needing to re-arrange things inside my drawers, or the little details adorning my cabinets, or even cleaning out my wardrobe. Run with it. You'll be surprised how far you get when you give in to these little productivity bursts. You may even find yourself making some extra cash by getting rid of some unwanted clutter.

s e v e n - apply a face mask and relax

...a perfect little moment of 'me time'. If you haven't got a face mask or sheet mask to hand, you can always head to Pinterest for a diy recipe. Opt for a soothing mask, and let it sit for 20-30 minutes whilst you sit down with some music or with a book.

e i g h t - make your own body scrub or twice a week it's always nice to refresh your skin with a little exfoliation, followed by some hydrating moisturiser. If you don't have a body scrub, you can absolutely diy your own with some simple ingredients.

n i n e - research that topic you've been interested in

...maybe you've heard about a new skincare brand, or your friends have recommended a new author, or there's a huge political movement happening, or you want to explore some hidden areas in your neighbourhood - head to social media and have a peek. I have endless albums on Pinterest, YouTube, and Instagram filled with lots of spots for me to explore, or new skincare products to research, or new diys and bakes to try.

t e n - de-clutter your bathroom

...if you're like me, you'll end up adding new things/products/plants to your bathroom every week or two, and before you know it there's no more space. I don't have much shelf space in the bathroom, in fact I only have the spot at the end of the tub. It's a small bathroom, and so I try to keep it as clutter-free as possible, which means lots of re-arranging when I feel it's getting too 'product-heavy'. A space always feels so much fresher when you've reorganised it.

e l e v e n - exercise

...some of us love the gym, but others prefer the at home work out or going for a run. If you feel like you need to clear your mind, a little work out is a great way to do that. It will also give you an energy boost and leave you feeling so much mentally lighter than before, even if your body's feeling sore. If you're not keen to bring on a sweat, a little yoga would be ideal.

t w e l v e - do some baking's so much more rewarding when you can sit down to a dessert or cake or bake that you've created yourself. I don't often venture out to a bakery, so if I'm really feeling that sweet tooth calling I head to the kitchen and create an apple and blueberry pastry or a banoffee pie.

t h i r t e e n - stargazing

...if it's a warm evening, grab a blanket and head outside. I take my sun-lounger with me and get cosy just in time to watch the sun go down, then I stay for the stars. If it's a cold evening, you can cosy up by a window indoors (turn off all the lights for better views of the sky). It really is so relaxing to watch the stars twinkle, and twilight is my absolute favourite time of day. If you're surrounded by street lights or city lights, heading outside of the city or to a rooftop space (if you can) is a better idea - light pollution really does limit your views of the night sky.

f o u r t e e n - sew some seeds

...even if you don't have an outdoor garden space, you can absolutely utilise a shelf or table or counter indoors. I'm fortunate enough to have a small garden space and I use it for growing blueberries, potatoes, lettuce, peppers, kale, pak choi... all sorts of things. I don't grow heaps of each, but enough for me. Indoors I have a little spot in my kitchen where I grow spring onions/scallions and mint. You really don't need endless space, just a corner for your favourite herbs will make all the difference when you're cooking - they also smell great in the kitchen. You don't necessarily need to buy seeds either; I started my spring onion/scallion area by replanting the bulbs from store-bought ones!

f i f t e e n - get creative 

...perhaps you've seen some amazing artwork that you'd love to hang on your wall; why not try and re-create it. I love alcohol ink, they look incredible when they're carefully mixed together on the right paper, and I'm absolutely dying to give it a try at home. Maybe watercolours or pastels or clay or paper are your medium; do a little research online and spend some time being creative with yourself.

s i x t e e n - pick up that games console 31 I am not ashamed to say that I still love losing myself in a little gaming sometimes. The makers of Animal Crossing recently released Animal Crossing New Horizons for the Nintendo Switch, and I've been hooked. It's such a cute and relaxing game too, a perfect way to unwind. Or if you really do need to release some tension, Tomb Raider, Witcher Wild Hunt, or Greedfall are some of my Xbox One favourites.

A R O U N D  O T H E R S

s e v e n t e e n - visit a museum or an aquarium

...I really wish we had fabulous museums nearby like the Natural History museum, but we do have a lovely aquarium an hour way. The aquarium I visit is a conservation-focused aquarium, and they work closely with the marine students at the university next door, as well as working on so many ocean-positive projects. There's something mesmerising and relaxing about watching fish swim around. You can also wander around at your own pace too, and spend as much or as little time at any exhibit. If you aren't keen to head outdoors, you can find an array of digital museum and aquarium visits online now, with full exhibit views and some interactive points.

e i g h t e e n - head to a coffee shop

...sometimes I find that when working from home life and other things can become quite a distraction; it's always nice to change your scenery and to treat yourself to a barista-made drink. If I'm taking my laptop, I tend to get so much more done when I'm in a public setting, you feel so much more focused on your own laptop or book... rewarding yourself with intermittent people-watching breaks, of course!

n i n e t e e n - treat yourself to dinner

...I used to find this to be such a scary notion, but having a meal alone at a restaurant or café doesn't have to be as awkward and as daunting as it seems. I'm a big solo traveller, and travelling solo means that I have to eat out alone whenever I don't have a kitchen to cook from. I've never been bothered by another person, I've never been stared at, and there are definitely other people doing it too. It's actually quite a freeing and empowering experience!

t w e n t y - visit a public garden 

...if you don't have a park or beach or country road to wander along, then a public garden or a botanical garden is a great way to immerse yourself in greenery. Perhaps there's one that you've always wanted to visit, but haven't yet had the time - make your way over there and tick it off your list.

Well I hope you found at least one new way to spend some quality time with yourself. If you have any other suggestions, please do leave a comment below - I'd love to find a new activity for one.

Claudia xo

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  1. Love these ideas! As an introvert, I need time to myself and reading a book or wandering round parks or shops are things I like to do without other people!

    Serena /