My job requires me to talk. A lot. I have written a previous post about needing to be friendly, outgoing and charming and at times, assertive. I have to keep a smile permanently plastered on my face, and appear as if I am interested in everyone’s day. This takes energy. Sometimes, at the end of a long shift I don’t want to talk anymore. I don’t have the motivation to be social after a long day of it being required of me. As a previously extroverted social – butterfly, I am becoming a lot more of a hermit. I chalk this up to my profession and perhaps my life experience. Whatever the cause, there is nothing I love more than the having the house to myself, soaking in a bath and dancing alone to Motown classics. As I have gotten older, I find myself yearning for the quiet.
Further, I realize just how important putting yourself first really is. If I don’t pay attention and indulge my needs I will be no help to others. There are negative associations with words like ‘alone’ and ‘lonely’. Not being surrounded by friends or romantic partners is looked down upon. This is compounded during holidays and specifically, Valentine’s day.
I am often looked at with pity in restaurants when I take myself out on dates. The thing is, I like myself and think that i’m pretty good company. I don’t have to negotiate and compromise. I don’t have to think about conversation topics and/or whether the other person(s) are enjoying themselves, I can just be.