Notes on Solitude

Notes on Solitude

Muhammed Hussain Sufi

Solitude is an essence to sculpt the symmetric shape out of a regular stone you are, by removing the deformities, edges and filling the patches. It is an introspection, wherein you get a chance to have a look at your make both internally as well as externally. It is an insight about your body, mind and soul. There is a difference between solitude and loneliness. Solitude is a voluntary decision of spending some time alone whereas loneliness is a negative feeling, which one feels while undergoing a mental trauma due to any loss or life’s struggle. Some people have ability to use loneliness as solitude and thereby convert it into an advantage. Solitude is a positive attitude towards life, it is essential for personal growth, for leadership, and for self reliance.
Experience is the finest teacher: a person can experience things by involving himself or herself in it. People who make it big in this life are often seen having one thing in common. It is the time they spend alone. Solitude is essential for looking at your shortcomings, working on your shortcomings to make yourself better with every performance you are out to make later.
Best-selling author Gail Sheehy wrote a book called “Pathfinders” after interviewing people who had made a difference in the world. She said she expected to find they were born to the right parents, went to the right schools, and made the right choices of mate, work, and environment. In 100 percent of the cases, that was untrue. The one thing all these people had in common was that they had experienced a “dark night of the soul,” some trauma, some emotional or physical challenge, where they had to develop the character and fortitude to come out the other side. They took adversity and let it shape them. They in turn helped shape the world.
Leverage your time and enhance your powers of observation to gain insights that accelerate your own personal growth and development. Think like a descriptive writer. Observe everything and make mental notes: Connect the dots, see complementary and opposing forces, make correlations, and draw conclusions (even if you’re wrong, you’ll learn from it!). Make new behaviors a habit that will strengthen your character to make a difference in the lives of others. But first, you have to know yourself. As Deresiewicz, says, “So solitude can mean introspection, it can mean the concentration of focused work, and it can mean sustained reading.”You can continuously improve yourself by asking questions to yourself, by finding faults in yourself and working on those faults. Introspection means to talk to yourself and the best way to talk to yourself is by talking to another person in you.
If you have the guilty feeling of not doing enough, you are not inspiring yourself, in order to be an achiever, you need to inspire yourself and that is how you will inspire people. The “success code” is written deep beneath your skin, your mind constantly cribs for not following that code. ( It could be because it gets involved into noise and chatter of the world around you). You need to actively carve time and spend it with yourself, away from distractions. To observe, read the code, follow it. You have to seek solitude, carve solitude out of your busy schedule ask tough questions to yourself and find answers to the same.
The best project you can work on is yourself. Teach yourself things, tame your body, teach it new skills like playing musical instrument, dancing, mixed martial arts. Tame your mind, teach it reading, writing, observing, thinking better, and thinking positive. Develop a mind wherein if your close friend or a relative passes away, you remain unperturbed, because you know this is the way of life and this is how it has been and this is how it will be. You can do all this only when you take yourself to some secluded place, do nothing, just sit and observe. Observe the restlessness growing inside, observe your mind giving you reasons to abandon solitude at once, observe it telling you to have a look at your cellphone, observe it scaring you, observe it telling you’re missing out on fun other people are having, observe it telling you that you are wasting your time, observe it telling you it is hot or cold or surface is hard, wet, uncomfortable. Try removing all obstacles one after other. Observe it drifting you to sleep, when you still stay adamant of spending some time alone. Observe what it does, what is asks for, once this practice is repeated, the noise goes down with the time and that is when real questions are asked. Those will be the questions you will have to find answer. Your body and mind will give you tasks to fulfill. While working on those tasks you will eventually get rid of self-crib, and be friends with yourself.
Those people who acknowledge the problem are half way through rather than those who have tend to be over-smart all the time. These people suffer from multiple disabilities but hide them behind their wits; they think that they are ruling the roost, however they pass through this life like a cattle, they are famous among people and leave a very good first impression, are appreciated in front but deep down everyone is aware of their flimsy personality and are laughed at. People know their talks hold no water and are nothing in substance. They have ideas about everything and are scared to execute the tiniest thing. Don’t end up as an idiot. They out rightly deny these notions because they fail to observe, their introspection faculty is not developed, Work on yourself, work on solitude. It will teach you things ad-infinitum.

The author is a lawyer at the High Court of Jammu & Kashmir & can be reached at :sufi@xeal.in and on twitter @sufi071.

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