Sometimes relationships just don’t work out. You may want one, but for the time being, you may be better off alone.

In fact, you’ll feel better when you learn how to be okay with being alone and realize that you can be happy without a romantic partner.

But how can you do this?

The answer is to realize you don’t need a partner to fulfill you. Remind yourself that you have your friends, family, and close loved ones that are your biggest supporters.

Remember, relationships are a give and take. You have to be willing to put yourself in a position to work for their happiness as well. Whereas, when you’re single, you put yourself first and take care of yourself above all else.

Is being alone all the time unhealthy?

As humans, we are always looking for that human connection. But that doesn’t mean it has to happen right now, or it can’t come in the form of friends and family instead of a romantic relationship.

According to relationship coach Lisa Hawkins, determining the healthiness of being alone all the time depends greatly on a person’s personality.

“Some are more introverted and others more extroverted. According to Maslow’s chart of human needs, love and connection are basic human needs. Being alone all the time means we are not getting our basic needs met. That can be unhealthy. However, at times, it’s needed to heal and go within to do our inner work and come out stronger and happier,” she says.

Remember that in times when you feel down, you can find happiness within yourself, and you don’t have to rely on anyone or anything to be content in life.

Often in society, we see people avoiding being alone. At times, people can feel so uncomfortable with being alone that they use substances to numb the uncomfortable feelings that come up with that,” Hawkins adds. “With the current pandemic, many are experiencing being alone too much and disconnected from people. It seems that video chat doesn’t take the place of human touch and in-person connections.”

To avoid developing unhealthy habits while you’re alone, use your alone time to be productive or invest your time in a new hobby, a new TV show, or listening to songs to make you feel less alone. Whatever you do, try to stay away from relying on substances to get you through tough times.

Is it healthy to enjoy being alone?

According to Hawkins, it’s perfectly healthy to enjoy time alone! “It’s a sign that someone is emotionally healthy, and enjoys their own life and their own company if they enjoy being alone,” she says.

Spending time on your own also helps you become more independent, free, and confident. Rather than thinking negative thoughts, time with yourself lets you love those deepest parts of who you are, finding happiness within yourself, and using that to drive you forward, instead of relying on a romantic relationship.

In addition, there are multiple studies that suggest doing things on your own and spending time with yourself are beneficial to your health.

One study found that individuals are better at solving problems when alone versus in a group, inspiring creativity to come up with your own ideas without an outside influence. A similar study determined that individuals working alone had better memory recollection than when working with a group.

Not only that, but this study found that highly intelligent individuals are less happy when socializing with friends and acquaintances, and another study that included teenagers found that in just five days without technology to communicate, participants were able to better interpret the emotions of others based on facial expressions.

However, Hawkins adds, spending too much time alone can be bad for your health. “Being alone too much can cause depression as well as sleep issues, lethargy, and hopelessness. It can raise blood pressure, increase cortisol levels, and can affect blood flow. It stresses the heart.”

How do you be okay when you’re alone? Being okay with being alone means realizing that even though you may think a relationship is the key to happiness, you are the only one in charge of that. And you might not realize it until you become more comfortable and confident with being alone.