We all have a pattern that we follow and solitude often doesn’t make the cut. From the second we wake up in the morning to the moment we fall back asleep at night, we’ve all become relatively predictable. Wake up, check email, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, news, listen to voicemails, etc. We jump in the car, turn on the radio and listen to the news or music. Then many of us get to work, turn on computer screens, check more email, move more information, sit through conference calls meetings, sift through project plans amidst a buzzing smartphone with the latest message. Finally, we break free of the office. Maybe we play music on the drive home or make some personal phone calls. When we get home, we prepare dinner, maybe run to kid’s sports practices or activities, then get the kids down and crash on the couch. Then we flip on the TV and watch whatever series we’re currently obsessed with.
We’re living in a never-ending cycle of distractions, and it becomes hard and even uncomfortable to spend time alone with our thoughts without involuntarily reaching for our smart phones or other screens.
Solitude is simply the act of being alone, and however barbaric that may sound at the moment, it’s beneficial to you for a lot of different reasons. Uncommen exists to help men re-engage with purposeful living. And living on purpose takes thoughtfulness. An Uncommen man is a thoughtful man. He needs quiet time to think and reflect. Maybe it’s time for you to unplug and step into solitude. Here are a few reasons why solitude is important.
Solitude helps increase creativity. You would be amazed at how easily ideas start to flow just by detaching yourself from outside activities and allowing your mind the freedom to think deeply about specific topics. This is particularly the case for men who are involved in demanding jobs that require a lot of individual thoughts and ideas. When it’s beginning to feel like you’ll never be able to come up with the next idea, take a few minutes out of your day and sit in solitude. Clear your mind and allow yourself to think deeply. Maybe go for a walk. You won’t know what your mind is capable of until you give yourself some time to think.
Solitude is a gateway to know how you are. Spending time alone without any distractions is one of the best ways to understand who you are as a man. It’s hard to find solitude due to the busy and cluttered world we’re living in; it’s easy to get lost in other people’s opinions and personalities instead of taking the time to form your own. Solitude provides you with the chance to ask yourself important questions and for you to come up with honest answers without the influence of others.
Solitude gives your brain a much-needed break. In the modern world, we are always being pulled in 100 different directions. Let’s be honest, there are very few moments each day when there is not a screen in our face, a person we’re talking to, or an assignment that we have to complete. This constant state of being on the go can become exhausting and overwhelming after a while. By giving yourself small amounts of solitude into your day and letting your mind relax, you will feel calmer.
Uncommen Challenge: Where can you find solitude this week? When are times you can turn off the phone and unplug? Go for a walk, get outside, or listen to the silence. You might find yourself being recharged by the silence.
Follow the examples of Christ in Luke 6:12 “It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray, and He spent the whole night in prayer to God.”
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