Monday, April 10, 2017

Why We Need Solitude

Solitude––the state or situation of being alone. Something so blissful and joyous. The freedom you have while spending time by yourself. The possibilities!

How absurd that sounds; to want to be alone. But there’s no other time when you can absolutely be yourself, or become your own person. It the this that gives us the strength to independence without ever forcing independence upon ourselves. Most don’t know why they need ‘time to themselves,’ they just do. Is it a break from the world? A breather? Some people can’t be in solitude and the danger is a reliance on others. 

We require solitude––separation from society––to be able to form and possess our own thoughts and opinions and conclusions. We love our friends, but if you never spend time apart from them you’ll never disagree with them. There’s an undying pressure when being in the presence of others, whether you feel like you’re being judged consciously or subconsciously. And you’re right, you probably are being judged! But lets’ face it, no one ever stops judging. We’re constantly having thoughts about the people and things around us––just don’t let these opinions be someone else’s! 

When I say alone, I don’t mean sitting alone in your room scrolling through Facebook. I mean away from society––from other people. You then have the freedom (and strength even) to think about whatever you want; or whatever you don’t want. You don’t have to agree with people just for the sake of reputation. Because no one’s watching or judging you (people can’t read minds). You’re not being pressured by anyone to think a certain way––to suffer. Because there is only suffering in pretending to like someone that you don’t; just because someone you like likes them. 

How can we change and grow as individuals if we’re under the constant influence of society? How can we have our own opinions if we never escape the people who tell us how to think. We can never be our own person! And forever we will be miserable until we learn to do so. 

Many tell us to go to university, get a fancy degree, a high paying job, get married, have kids, buy a house, etcetera etcetera… And most people do it! Just because they are told it’s what’s best. How awful! How miserable one can be, doing what’s ‘best’ yet not wanting to do so at all. I wish I could travel the world, they say. But no one ever does it. For the longest time, I thought I wanted to be an engineer. Why? Because people said I’d be good at it––because it makes a lot of money. Mind you, people that I don’t even talk to anymore. And on my own I realized what I wanted; what I like and what I enjoy. All because I didn’t have people around me that I felt I needed to impress or be accepted by. It wasn’t that, that was important. And in being able to distance myself, I was able to create my own opinions and thoughts about the world. Not about what was right, wrong, good or bad, but what was worth doing for myself.

And thus I became my own person instead of one of those people. 

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Maira Gall