“Spend some time alone every day. “
It is so important we enjoy our own company, and make a habit of being alone every day. To not be surrounded by others all the time is a very good skill to develop. Most of us do not find this easy, but there will be different times in our lives when it is forced upon us. Whether through sickness, a crisis or old age. When our lives are going well and we feel healthy we think we have forever!
It is good to think about what we would be like if we couldn’t read, or hear, or felt too sick to do anything. Could we face those days alone with our thoughts? It is far better we learn to be still, whether by meditating/praying or breathing the sounds of nature.
A good way to start is to take a few minutes each day to empty our minds of all our ‘should be doing lists’ and anxieties, and replace them with thankfulness and thoughts of the many blessings we do have. Gradually we are able to spend more time on our own. I have found now if I am very busy, I long for time alone and need it to bring back the balance of calm for my soul.
We took back four of our grandchildren to Auckland at the weekend. We have spent time with them over the Christmas break with lots of talking and activities. When Bryan and I arrived back home, the silence was almost deafening! I opened the bi-folding doors in our bedroom first thing this morning to listen to the birds and enjoy the garden. Our regular wood pigeon visitor came by and gave us marvellous display of flying high up in the air and swooping down before flying off through the trees. It was stunning.
I have learned through experience our thought life needs to be healthy and positive for us to survive the difficult challenges that come unexpectedly. The earlier we acquire healthy thinking the better equipped we will be in the future. We can teach our children and grandchildren to enjoy time out alone as a survival skill in a crazy busy world.
I meet many people in my age group (60 – eeek!!) or older who avoid thinking about what might lie ahead. Instead they will cross that bridge when they come to it. I call that burying our heads in the sand. Issues in life that we haven’t previously faced have a habit of catching up with us unexpectedly. I would rather prepare and face reality as much as possible. None of us can choose what happens to us, but to be as prepared as we can does help. It is a part of building a solid foundation of resilience to help us cope in life.