Time Well Spent
It is no question that loneliness is on the rise; single-person households are increasing, marriages are declining and depression rates are rising. But do not confuse loneliness with solitude.
Solitude is a state of appreciation for being alone. It is torturous for adolescents because it is a time when they identify with their peers, but for adults, solitude should be harnessed and appreciated!
The mental health benefits of solitude:
- Increases empathy and compassion (you are not focused on people around you, allowing time for you to be appreciative of your relationships)
- Increases productivity (when around people, you become distracted and do not always give your best effort)
- Increases creativity (it allows your mind to wander and act freely and silly)
- Increases mental strength (the more you are able to tolerate being alone, the more you will experience increased happiness, satisfaction and improved stress management)
- Decreases depression (enjoying alone time makes you more appreciative of the time when you do spend with friends and family, resulting in increased happiness)
- Increases your planning skills (it gives you time to plan your goals, analyze your progress and implement new changes)
- Increases insight (it allows you to know yourself better without the influence of others)
- Helps you unwind (it helps you reboot, clear your mind and think more clearly)
- Improves concentration (it keeps you more focused while minimizing distractions)
- Promotes deep thought (allows you to analyze your day, actions and relationships)
- Helps you think of solutions to common day problems
- Enhances your relationships (allows you to better understand who you are and what you are looking for in people, as well as make sharper choices)
So ditch those superficial relationships; do not cherish those more than a nice quiet time by yourself. Understand that loneliness is not the same as solitude; the former involves less time spent with others while the latter cherishes time spent by oneself as well as time spent with others.
Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)