I joke with my husband that he’s lucky to have a wife who is perfectly fine being by herself. It’s a introvert trait that his extrovert self truly appreciates. Leave me with a project, good book, or a tv series and I can go for days without communicating with anyone. I realize it’s a luxury some may fear to even experience.
We live in a mad dash world where the faster you move the blurrier your life gets. People who slow down to smell the roses get run over. Those who take their time to make decisions are looked upon as feeble-minded with no backbone. Those who deviate from the pack are brought up on charges of being a hermit and a recluse.
Yet the benefits of resting in solitude outweighs the name calling and side eyes.
Spiritual Solitude. Countless of men and women in the Bible whether they chose it or not, found purpose after time spent away with God. We deserve a mountain to climb to get away from the din! We deserve a garden to escape to in order to recharge. For every person God led to the desert, garden, and mountain, He sent back a person ready and refreshed for the next season in his or her life.
Physical Solitude. We get so caught up in work, family and obligations that at day’s end we lose ourself in it all. Married couples deserve a break from each other. Parents hands down need some time away from the kiddos. Employees return with a better sense of purpose when there is time spent away from work.
Emotional Solitude. I can’t speak enough on the importance of pressing that off button. I knew when my mother passed away, that I had to set aside the expectations others had for me and collect the expectations I needed for myself. I could have continued at optimum speed and never missed a beat last Spring. After all, I am a go-getter extraordinaire! I make things happen in half the time it takes some folks to think about doing it. But I knew that in the long run, it would figuratively and literally be the death of me.
Projects to propel my personal aspirations–on hold. Commitments to my church–on hold. Commitments to organizations I served in–on hold. Commitments to friends and family–on hold. I would learn that in some cases I was expendable, hell, even replaceable! You know what? That was alright by me. Whatever didn’t get done is still left undone. Egad! The earth is STILL moving on its axis!
To the person whose fighting with every fiber of their being to stay in the rat race with bruises and scars they need to manage–get off at the nearest stop. To the person whose very life depends on them slowing down, now is the time. To the person whose pride will not allow for being still and knowing that He IS GOD, you will learn the hard way.
Make a commitment to yourself. Embrace the quiet.
A bonus for my natural born introverts. Author Susan Cain’s book “Quiet” is a study in the power of introverts. Here is her Ted Talk: http://youtu.be/c0KYU2j0TM4