Too much solitude isn’t such a good thing…
I wrote a post last year discussing all the good things about solitude. Check it out here.
This one looks at the not so good.
Wow, a millennial who can look at something from more than one perspective. Give the girl a promotion.
I like spending time alone, but too much time alone can send you down the dark, dangerous path that leads to the town of Overthinking.
What will you find there?
You might end up thinking about things that you wouldn’t normally spend the time thinking about, but because you are on your own and you have the time, you’ll spend three hours reflecting on that annoying thing you do in every conversation.
Nobody else seems to have noticed it, but you have, and you must spend another hour at least trying to figure out why you do it. Is it inherited? Is it your parents’ fault? Usually is. And how can you stop doing it? Is it possible to stop? Well, if it’s inherited…
You might end up thinking about all of the things that you should have or could have done in your life.
Why didn’t you go to Natasha’s party when you were fourteen years old? If you had gone, you would have had a great time, and everybody would have loved you. Most importantly, you and Natasha would have spent the whole evening bonding, and you would have become best friends as a result. She would have invited you to all the cool parties, and then you would have become popular, and you would have never turned down a place at Reading Uni out of fear that you wouldn’t fit in.
After you finished uni, you would have gone travelling in Australia and Europe and America with all your Reading pals for three years. You would have settled in a nice cottage in the countryside with three children and your husband you met at Reading.
Surprisingly, overthinking often makes you feel worse, not better, about yourself, and this can lead you down an even darker and more dangerous pathway to the town of What’s The Point?
What’s the point of exercising anymore? I’m going to put on weight when I get pregnant, so what’s the point in trying to maintain my svelte size in the meantime? And even if I do get rid of it, I’ll only put it back on again during the second and third pregnancies. And then there’s getting older. Everyone puts on weight when they get older …
What’s the point in writing every day for two hours? The likelihood that anybody is going to read it is slim. You’re just wasting time. And as far as wasting time goes, there are plenty of more interesting ways to achieve that than staring at a blank screen. Why not return to those books on existentialism that you didn’t get round to reading when you were doing your English degree? What were they called again?
You can’t remember? Sounds about right.
Well, if you can’t even remember the titles of the books, why bother reading them? Pointless. Pointless. Pointless. You should throw away your Kindle now. Burn all your books. At least you’ll remember doing that.
What’s the point in communicating with others? It’s not as if I like talking to people anyway. People are drab and stupid and dull, and I can’t bear to be a part of such dreadful conversations. Why bother continuing relationships with these wretched people I don’t have the slightest thing in common with?
And on it goes.
You might have entered the world of solitude as the happiest person alive, only to end it three weeks later as the most miserable.
Solitude has its merits, but when real loneliness kicks in, when you are the only person you’re having a conversation with day in and day out, it’s time to leave the house. Go and get your nails done. Go people-watch at a coffee shop. Call up a friend. Do anything other than stay in the silence.