Listen While Reading: Habits Of My Heart // Jaymes Young.
Solitude was a word that I learned about when I was younger, deciding that for me, it was not only a state of being but a certain livelihood. I spent so much of my time by myself, and at that time I indulged in excessive amounts of “me time,” so I interpreted it as something negative. It was absolutely horrible to be alone.
Fast forward to the present, and I treasure my moments alone. You’ll find nary a television turned on, maybe not even the lights. There is just me and my thoughts, my utter contentment and reflections. Life gets busier as time passes, and you realize that being alone is one of the greatest and cheapest treasures we can afford. The benefits are endless, ranging from problem-solving to even recharging (especially for us introverts out there). It’s a necessary aspect of self-care that we should all work into our schedules. Here are some tips to help you spend a moment of solidarity:
1. Find the right 8tracks playlist + Rainymood
Music is a balm to the soul, and wonderful for a session with me, myself, and I. Maybe classical music gets you calm, or maybe blasting Aerosmith gets you in the zone. Whatever the case, be sure to add Rainymood or any other ambient sound as a bonus. You won’t regret it.
There’s no feeling like the relaxation of meditation when time stops and starts with each and every breath. Music or no music, cross-legged or not, you can do this practically anywhere. After a toiling or tiring day, this may be just the remedy.
3. Make a yummy beverage
For me, a time of reflection usually starts when I have a steaming hot cup of decaf in my hand. Warm or hot drinks, in general, are known for increasing blood flow and relaxing the muscles. However, whatever drink you associate with a languorous day, even if it is a nice iced lemonade, should be in your hand.
4. Turn off the phone or laptop
It’s a scary thought, to be without your technology for an hour. But I assure you, it is possible. Even if for five minutes, just set it aside and allow yourself to just… be.
Sometimes, we need to catalog our thoughts and/or feelings. While I personally do this by musing aloud, you can also simply write it down. Even an automatic writing session can take a load off your shoulders. If you’ve used your notebook to jot down any negative emotions, feel free to tear out a sheet, crumple it, tear it, and throw it away, just to get rid of it. You’d be surprised how therapeutic this can be. Or if writing is not your cup of tea, doodling is a great place to start.
I love naps. Granted, I hardly get as many as I would like, nothing is better than a fulfilling, well-deserved nap. Not only does it keep all the grumpies away, it also improves overall performance and makes up for having a less than adequate amount of nighttime rest. There’s nothing like giving yourself the gift of rest.
Yes, in a perfect world we would have plenty of quiet time to dedicate to ourselves. The stress would be minimal and the business would lull to a strolling pace. But, we don’t. So we have to utilize whatever time we have left or get our peace and quiet in the late night or early mornings when everyone is asleep. Whatever we do, we do what we must and it may seem impossible at times but I assure you, we don’t do it in vain.
Words by Trinity Ingram // Photography by Emily Cook.
© 2015 Reef Magazine