Solitude . . . Savor it!

snowstorm

Snowstorms have some important lessons to teach us.

First of all, they show us that the amount of control we have is pretty meager. Humbling, eh?

Second, they tell us that there’s something bigger out there. (It doesn’t hurt to be reminded of that from time to time.)

But there’s another lesson that struck me recently and I want to share it with you.

Not long ago, I called a friend . . . can’t remember why. Within seconds she asked me, “Are you snowed in?” I told her I was. Then she uttered something off the wall. “Isn’t it just wonderful?” I had to tell her the truth. “Absolutely!”

We then giggled like two school girls running down a hill with hair and ribbons flying in every direction.

That incident highlighted a subtle fact for me:

Many of us do a poor job of granting ourselves personal alone time—guilt free—unless it’s forced upon us.

That’s too bad because regular breaks are necessary for our mental well-being. They free us from the constant stream of daily stresses and demands.

Unfortunately, our society values frenetic busyness and productivity over solitude. We’re rewarded for that activity versus the activity of solitude which is easily viewed as lazy. But solitude is far from laziness and it’s far from being unproductive.

In our moments of solitude we reconnect with ourselves, go inward, reflect on and process life’s events. Solitude is a necessary shelter for recovering and recharging. Once we resurface from our space of solitude, we’re prepared to tackle the world anew.

So, instead of feeling guilty about our desire for personal time, or relying on the weather to do us a favor, we should be eagerly factoring it into our daily routine.

Excuse me while I go follow my own advice. 🙂

15 Comments

Filed under Contemplations, General Interest, Get Free

15 responses to “Solitude . . . Savor it!

  1. Good post, Salee. Snow has taught me a valuable lesson. To hurry up with the plans to move south… Just sayin’…

  2. Jeanette Boerger

    YES!!!! You seem to always bring into the LIGHT that which we need to remember! Thanks, Salee!

  3. Jennifer

    You nailed it! I consider time alone a guilty pleasure. But why? I know that I’m a better mom, wife and friend when I can recharge my “me battery” but I feel selfish for wanting it. So many depend on me to be able and ready at every moment and if I actually confessed my need they just MIGHT understand or even, gasp, encourage it!……I believe I just answered my own question. 🙂 Thank you for the thought provoking article!!

    • Guilt’s an nasty, nasty monster, agree? It’s always fighting it out with our wiser side. Brother.
      I love your term “me battery!” I plan to steal it … with or without your permission. So there.

  4. I do enjoy the time in the house alone. I get to reconnect with myself.

  5. Alissa Wilbanks

    Being a stay-at-mom, this snow hasn’t changed my daily routines but when I do get that rare oppurtunity to stroll Target (ALL BY MYSELF) I love every second of it. I usually start to feel guilty for my husband who is stuck home with the kids or my son who begged to go with me but I have to stop and remind myself that I almost never get a break and to just enjoy my rare moment alone. Ahh and those mornings when I wake up before everyone else and get to drink my coffee and read without interruption. Those are the best mornings.

  6. It’s so wonderful that you understand what you need. Maybe we should call it “self-wise.” And it’s equally wonderful that you fight off the guilt monster. We growl a lot—to everyone around us—when we cave into it, agree?

    • Alissa Wilbanks

      Yes, I think as a mom we put a lot of pressure on ourselves and we think we are supposed to be perfect all the time. It
      just can’t happen. We have unrealistic expectations for ourselves and each other. The house can be messy, you are allowed to give yourself alone time. And if you focus on what makes you happy, that is what your kids will remember.

  7. Marty

    I once heard that the Japanese won’t disturb anyone who is blankly staring off into space because that’s considered a healthy and necessary thing to do. Instead, they will interrupt someone who is very busy because activity can be taken in stride. I think they have the right idea!

  8. Pingback: Solitude . . . Savor it! | karenmcfarren

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