I have been running around with my hair on fire. I have too many demands and not enough time. A few nights this week, I returned home from the office after 9 p.m. All I wanted was to be alone and put my brain in neutral. My dear husband wanted to spend time with me, make sure that I had eaten dinner, learn about my day, and even watch an episode of Six, the series about Navy SEALs. I have been gone all day and, of course, I need to switch gears to be a loving and attentive partner. I am a more loving and attentive when I have had some alone time to decompress. I do not want to care for, nurture or accommodate anyone else’s needs. I just need some space.
The research regarding alone time is robust and plentiful. Studies show the ability to have alone time has been linked to increased happiness, better life satisfaction and improved stress management. People who enjoy alone time experience less depression, frustration and anger. The busier one is the more one benefits from alone time. Being alone allows me to think, recharge, rest my brain, focus and be quiet. It allows me to feel the rhythm of my breath and the condition of my heart. When there is silence and solitude, I feel the presence of God and I am right with the universe.
Spending time alone gives me a chance to ponder my purpose and my passions, my gifts and talents. In a quiet space, I have the opportunity for clarity and focus, thinking about goals, my progress, opportunities, planning and changes I might need to make in my life or my business. It allows me to be thankful and full of gratitude for all that I have. I think about my accomplishments and how much I love, adore and cherish my children and grandchildren.
A quiet place allows me to reboot my brain and unwind. Most of the time being around a lot of people gives me energy, but too much of that, without a break of solitude, drains my soul and makes me cranky. Constantly being “on” does not allow me to refresh and replenish. By having no distractions, I have the chance to clear my mind to the point that I do not even know what I am thinking. Being alone actually allows me to be stronger, more creative and productive.
So how do I make time to be alone when I have no time? I become fiercely intentional about alone time. I become a private eye seeking a space and a time for solitude. I get up early and sit in the dark with my coffee, I go for a walk, shut my door, stay up late and just take in the silence of the night. Maybe I will ask for what I need, take care of myself and declare I need to be alone.
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