“How can you hear your soul if everyone is talking” Mary Doria Russel
One of the first things I have learned from living abroad, is to mind my own business. Whether as a neighbour, a passenger in a bus/train, in class, or where the clouds are the covering on our heads-MIND YOUR BUSINESS! Some days, flash a smile, other days, pretend to be Johnnie (keep walking). That didn’t work so well for me at first, being the over friendly, extroverted Nigerian that I am. But then I learned, and learned again; how to run back into the arms of my one true friend in solitude-Me.
“Solitude, whether endured or embraced is a necessary getaway to original thought” J.Hirshfield
As much as I would not like to admit that it was a certain void which needed filling that drove me to mine, Solitude is something I am grateful for. For someone who has always enjoyed the company of others, I can say that I’ve grown from been part of futile gatherings to saving that little time for myself. Of course it felt like self punishment at first, until I realised the importance of self value over seeking mere validation and attention from others. And the change has definitely been evident.A few things embracing solitude thought me are:
It prevents you from rushing/forcing yourself into desperate friendships/relationships that are not yielding. What should be forced in my opinion, should not even be done in the first place.
-Spending time with yourself is a natural way of evolving, because what you’re doing is getting to know the person in your body better, learning and feeding your soul with knowledge. This can only strengthen the person you become.
-It is a way of reflecting, musing or even meditating. An act of refill which mostly results in self restoration. At the end of the day, you’re able to walk alone.
-It is the only time we get to reach for ourselves, and tap from our deepest source. Allowing ourselves to just be. To face our vulnerability.
“You cannot be lonely if you like the person you’re alone with”Wayne Dyer
Although we enjoy the company of our loved ones (which is priceless), a little “me” time is necessary, and likewise allow them too their space when needed. It doesn’t have to be travelling to a desolate place, or becoming a monk to practice solitude. I like to to see it as a healthy way of disconnecting to connect. Those few minutes/hours of going off the internet, walking in nature, laying in the bath, indulging in a book, or simply doing nothing. Not even thinking; we lend a voice to our selves. And in that quietness and peaceful moment. only then can we be heard.I hope we all find time to go on the mind’s little holiday.