Inner Space
Hi, I’m Diana Demco and this is the Inner Space newsletter about my reflections on living an examined life. If you're new, you can find old editions here. You're getting this email because you signed up on my website. If you'd like to unsubscribe, click here.
It's beautiful to be alone. To be alone does not mean to be lonely. It means the mind is not influenced and contaminated by society. - Krishnamurti

When the world is faced with a loneliness epidemic, it seems strange to encourage people to spend more time by themselves. But while it's true that the disconnect rippling through our society is significant, that doesn't necessarily come from us spend too much time on our own, but from our inability to connect when we do come together.

As important as healthy social interactions are for our sense of connectedness, belonging and well-being, we equally need regular short periods of quality time by ourselves.

Blaise Pascal declared that all of man's troubles come from his inability to spend time alone. I don't know if truly all our problems stem from this, but some definitely do. When we're in constant need of being seen by others or sharing experiences with others we inhibit our individuality and lose our sense of identity.

Human beings, and all living organism really, benefit from the ebb and flow of daily activities. Wakefulness followed by sleep. Physical or mental activity followed by rest. Social interactions followed by quality time spent alone. For a balanced existence, the pendulum has to swing between the two sides.

When it comes to our alone time, it's essential to approach it mindfully. This is an opportunity for introspection and rejuvenation, so mindless scrolling or doom-watching have no place here. Your "you time" is a fertile ground for reflection, play and experimentation. It's when you should put away the demands and expectations others have of you and return to the authentic core within, the one that holds your values and aspirations.

Here are a few ideas for your solo time:
  • Meditate. Observing your thoughts and following your breath are powerful tools for reconnecting with yourself and learning to allow whatever arises to be as it is.
  • Journal. This is a great way to work through unresolved emotions and get clarity on your life.
  • Go for a walk. It is perhaps the simplest yet most potent medicine for mind and body. You can also think of it as a walking meditation.
  • Cultivate flow. A flow experience will make you lose sense of time and also of yourself. This can be done with any activity that has a strong coupling between you the your environment.
  • Do nothing. I truly believe this is an underrated skill. We're so good at setting goals and following them, that we completely forgot what it's like to not have a goal. Sometimes, the goal is simply to be.

Timeless Content

Relaxing beats
Lofi Girl | 27 minute listen
In case you want to listen to something while enjoying your you-time, I think this music is perfect for that.

Picture of the Week

Quote I'm Reflecting On

French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre on being lonely:

If you're lonely when you're alone, you're in bad company.

Question For You To Ponder

Where does your mind naturally drift to when you're alone?
Thank you for reading.

Until next time,
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