Can you remember a time when you were totally engaged in the present moment? Time disappeared. There was only you. Nothing to do. Nowhere to go. A chance to be quiet and listen to your heart.
I recently had the opportunity to have some solitude, a time completely alone, aside from our 11 year old yellow lab, Gracie Girl. This doesn’t happen that often, so I wanted to share a few things with you about my adventure with solitude. Just following my annual Girls Gather From All Around at the lake, I had a few hours to myself before Donny would rejoin me. I seized the moments and took an intentional time-out for me. I had been storing up files, clippings, quotes, thoughts from my siblings, all about my Mama—and I had been pondering a book project, entitled “12 Lessons My Mama Taught Me.”
I was right in the middle of a 21-Day Challenge with a newly discovered group, Unstoppable Influencers, and I was building motivation and inspiration to get back to my writing. This was a great feeling!!!
BE still and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10
I was basically alone, with God, me, and our canine. After attending author, Lauretta Hannon’s Write-In Workshop (author of The Cracker Queen: A Memory of a Jagged, Joyful Life) , as well as taking Josh Langston’s Writing Classes, (author of Writing Naked: The Secrets of Dynamic Prose Laid Bare, among many novels) I got down to business. I wrote, mused, wrote, and pondered. The time was amazing, I must say.
Now, before you say “There’s no way I have time for that!” and just stop reading at this point, I do realize that it is rare for a person to have the luxury to unplug from it all for this long.
Solitude is definitely a gift that few people take full advantage of and I would like to offer some thoughts on how you and I can seize the moments for being alone, if only for a few minutes in a day, week, or month.
As a new Jojo to two pre-one-year-old Grands, my solitude time has become more important than before. I LOVE time with them and I LOVE my time of being alone and allowing my body to catch up with soul. Time to catch my breath, exercise, work on my writing, or just sit and do nothing.
Seven Ways To Find Solitude:
take a walk
savor a cup of hot tea
treat yourself to ________ (a massage, shopping, exercise, a nap, gardening, healthy foods, dark chocolate, yoga, reading)
say “YES” to what you desire
say “NO” to that which doesn’t inspire
spend time in nature, alone, enjoying the pleasure of your own company
Henry David Thoreau (1817-1862) lived alone in the woods for two years and two months in a small structure built with his own hands, for just under $29.00.
An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day. Henry David Thoreau
While I have not been able to get through his book, Walden, cover-to-cover, I have read enough bits and pieces to confirm the benefits of solitude, both long like Thoreau, or short-term like the seven suggestions above.
How will you and I find ways to carve solitude
into our lives in the days ahead?
Later, after my time of solitude, the song, The Prayer came on over my Sirius radio.
I pray you’ll be our eyes, and watch us where we go,
And help us to be wise, in times when we don’t know
Let this be our prayer, as we go our way
Lead us to a place, guide us with your grace
To a place where we’ll be safe…lyrics from The Prayer
As I listened to the lyrics, I thought about how much better our world would be if we could just take a few minutes out and utter the lyrics of this song…
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