On Enjoying Solitude

Each day find a moment of solitude, stealing them when they can be found. For me, I’ll take them in the quiet of the early morning with the ritual of making coffee, or later in the evening sipping a soothing Scotch whisky. These moments, which can last a few short minutes or stretched over an hour, are when you should relax and let your mind wander.

I sit quietly, never lying down. I don’t practice meditation or guided breathing. I will hold the drink in my hands and savour the aromas and flavours, letting them seep and affect my mind. Relaxed. Content. For as long as it may last.

During these moments my only companions are my thoughts; whatever stray or random ideas which float to the surface of my mind. The thoughts drifting as if along a river, getting caught in eddies which swirl, catching my attention before being released to continue their journey. Don’t fixate on any one thing, the aim is to let your mind wander — where this takes you doesn’t matter.

The goal is in learning to find and appreciate these peaceful and pleasant moments. Enjoy the solitude*. 

*While solitude implies being alone, it can be achieved when near people with the aid of a white noise or nature sounds app (I find music to be far too distracting) — in a pinch earplugs work wonderfully as well. You needn’t close your eyes, often I try to keep focused on nearby objects: my hands, a table before me, trees, clouds, a stream of pedestrians passing by. The point is to find a moment each day, centre yourself, relax and enjoy it before the chaos of the world envelops you once again.