Solitude means different things to different people.
For some, solitude is something they crave. It allows them to reboot and disconnect from the stresses of daily life. While for others, solitude triggers a sense of emptiness, loneliness and despair.
If you’ve grown up as an only child or in a small family, as I did, you probably got used to spending time alone. As a child, I used to spend hours and hours reading, colouring in, cutting pictures from magazines and making collages, all while listening to music. I was rarely bored. If I told Mum I was bored, she’d find me a chore to do!
While I don’t consider myself a total introvert, I really enjoy spending time in solitude. It helps reinvigorate me. When it’s been a few weeks since I’ve had some alone time (like the school holidays), I can start to get a bit snappy with those around me. I know it’s time to seek out some peaceful time on my own.
Now don’t get me wrong! I love my family and friends dearly. There’s nothing I enjoy more than to sit and chat with those I care about, and I’m always happy to listen when someone needs to bounce around their thoughts and ideas. I also enjoy having my children around more in the holidays … but I also need some downtime.
Spending some time in solitude, such as meditating, walking, shopping, going to the movies, reading or listening to music, can certainly help lift your mood and provide clarity in your thinking.
Some of the benefits of solitude are:
- It can help quiet your mind
- Solitude gives you time for thought and personal reflection
- You don’t have to think about pleasing someone else
- You can do whatever pleases you
- It gives you time to process life events and relationships
- It can help you find your inner voice
- Solitude allows you to be your true self
- It can help enhance your creativity
- It enables you to focus on what’s important
- Solitude can help make or keep you mentally strong
- It helps improve concentration
Perhaps working from home has made me value my solitude even more than ever. I now thrive on quiet time and just love being left to my own devices to get things done. Having said that, there are definitely times when I start climbing the walls and need to get out of the office and talk to other people – and I have plenty of opportunities to do that.
Do you enjoy solitude at times? Or do you prefer to always be in the company of others?
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