When a relationship ends, there is a huge, empty space where it was. It can feel like a big, black hole. All that love, all that energy was pouring TO someone, and now they aren't there. But the habit of outpouring still is.
Somehow, you need to turn that loving energy back towards yourself. This is not so easy to do, but it can be done! In fact, it can be the opportunity of a lifetime! Finally, you can have the time and the energy to fall in love with you. In order to do this, you must go inward, for this is where your Self is!
Going inward can feel like a daunting task. Our instinct is to go outward. We want to get away from the pain, our broken hearts, the loss. But of course, that is exactly what we must attend in order to heal ourselves, not abandon ourselves. We must come to our own rescue and love ourselves back to life.
To do this we need to create space for ourselves. Being alone can be powerful and healing. We can take this time of being alone to heal recent wounds, and while we're at it, past ones, too. By allowing ourselves the time to know ourselves, to even linger there, we begin a process of self-love that will last for the rest of our lives.
In our society today, it can seem completely normal to fill up every single space with something. It is practically a taboo to not be busy. Busy-ness has come to mean worthiness, popularity, and success. I would counter it is simply unavailability. The world will try to convince you that you shouldn't ever, ever be alone. Like alone is bad. Like alone is failure.
But alone is where your heart is. It is where YOU are. And, alone is where you will begin to really learn to love yourself for who you are -- as you are.
By allowing yourself to be alone, you can cultivate a state of spaciousness. This internal posture of spaciousness opens the heart. It makes you available - because you are present. And this presence makes you available to every aspect of life, including new love.
In my book, Opening to Meditation, I offer this idea.
"Most of us don't know how to be alone. We're afraid of the dark outside when we're little, and we're afraid of the dark inside ourselves when we grow up. We learn to fill up all the dark spaces with TV and newspapers and drugs and busyness and anything else we can think of - anything not to be alone. But if you examine the word alone, you'll see that it comes from the compound word all-one. There's a big difference between the words alone and lonely."
This is a powerful notion -- that by being with ourselves, really with ourselves, we can gain our greatest insights and understanding. We can begin to truly learn and know ourselves. And, in time, we learn how to love ourselves -- our true self -- not only the persona that we go out into the world with, but that most real and fundamental part of us.
The ability to be alone is essential to eventually being in a relationship. It is our self-love that attracts a partner that is right for us. Being alone teaches us to accept ourselves, forgive ourselves, and finally to bloom ourselves open to love again.
Diana Lang is a spiritual teacher and author of
OPENING TO MEDITATION - www.DianaLang.com