How often do you find yourself alone?
Do you regularly make time to get away by yourself?
As your life gets busier, how often do you just spend time with you?
Most of us don’t think we have the time for this. We rush to work. We rush to the store, to pick up the kids, to the gym, running errands like a hamster on a wheel.
Want to try an experiment? I love to watch this event, which plays out in every restaurant I have seen. A couple is eating dinner. One person will get up. See how long the remaining person waits before fishing out the cell phone and playing around on it. Likely, it will not be long. It seems we are that uncomfortable with being alone, even in a crowded restaurant.
What would happen if we made alone time a priority?
Jesus did it. He would regularly remove himself from the crowds to be alone and meditate.
Thoreau did it. His book Walden is a classic, filled with the wisdom of his time alone in the woods.
But today? Take the time to be alone?
Studies show taking time out for you increases memory, creativity, and mood.
Take Time to Reflect
Leaders who take the necessary reflective time find meaning and intention in their work, increasing their effectiveness.
Studies have shown that taking alone time:
- Increases empathy
- Creates more accurate memories
- Helps teenagers improve both moods and grades
- Boosts creativity
- Allows for deeper, strategic thinking
- Improves your relationships
Nowhere to go? As cities get more crowded, there are even sensory deprivation pods popping up all over the country. You can pay to get away from everyone and everything and just soak in some salt water.
Introverts tend to increase their energy when alone. Extroverts derive their energy from people. And yet both extroverts and introverts benefit from the power of solitude. There’s simply a magic to being alone.
“Loneliness is the poverty of self. Solitude is the richness of self.” -May Sarton
“If you make friends with yourself, you’ll never be alone.” -Maxwell Maltz
“You cannot be lonely if you like the person you’re with.” -Wayne Dyer
“The longer one is alone, the easier it is to hear the song of the earth.” -Robert Anton Wilson
“Conversation enriches the understanding; but solitude is the school of genius.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
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