Solitude Is the Secret to Original Thinking and Better Decision Making

A Self-Investment with Exponential Results and High Yields

Image by Markus Spiske on Unplash

Solitude — a Practice to Tap into Your Potential

Solitude does not mean a complete withdrawal from worldly connections but a practice for having a healthy balance between your relationship with yourself and the world.

Introspection

“Marlow believes in the need to find yourself just as much as anyone does, and the way to do it, he says, is work, solitary work. Concentration. Climbing on that steamboat and spending a few uninterrupted hours hammering it into shape. Or building a house, or cooking a meal, or even writing a college paper, if you really put yourself into it.”

Concentration

‘Gathering yourself together into a single point rather than letting yourself be dispersed everywhere into a cloud of electronic and social input.’

“I find for myself that my first thought is never my best thought. My first thought is always someone else’s; it’s always what I’ve already heard about the subject, always the conventional wisdom. It’s only by concentrating, sticking to the question, being patient, letting all the parts of my mind come into play that I arrive at an original idea. By giving my brain a chance to make associations, draw connections, take me by surprise. And often even that idea doesn’t turn out to be very good. I need time to think about it, too, to make mistakes and recognize them, to make false starts and correct them, to outlast my impulses, to defeat my desire to declare the job done and move on to the next thing.”

Friendship

This idea is beautifully articulated in William Deresiewicz’s words:

“Introspection means talking to yourself, and one of the best ways of talking to yourself is by talking to another person. One other person you can trust, one other person to whom you can unfold your soul. One other person you feel safe enough with to allow you to acknowledge things — to acknowledge things to yourself — that you otherwise can’t. Doubts you aren’t supposed to have, questions you aren’t supposed to ask. Feelings or opinions that would get you laughed at by the group or reprimanded by the authorities. This is what we call thinking out loud, discovering what you believe in the course of articulating it.”

Bottomline

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