How to be alone: the difference between loneliness and solitude

Aytekin Tank
Sep 11, 2018 · 5 min read
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Originally published on JOTFORM.COM

Loneliness.

But wait — isn’t there a difference between solitude and loneliness?

Loneliness is being alone — and not liking it. It’s a feeling.

Solitude is being alone — and content. It’s a choice.

Connected but alone

The United Kingdom’s Prime Minister Theresa May has announced a loneliness minister.

Australia organized a Coalition to End Loneliness.

One in five Americans reports rarely or never feeling close to others.

And a recent study of over 20,000 people found that nearly half of respondents sometimes or always felt lonely.

Here’s the truth about loneliness

Loneliness is an internal state that doesn’t — as most people assume — depend on external factors.

Our fear of solitude is really fear of boredom

Connected yet lonely

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1. Know yourself.

2. The human species is born to be social.

The joy of being alone

“It should be: ‘You’ve been so good that now you can go to your room to be by yourself and do anything you like!’”

When you surround yourself with moments of solitude and stillness, you become intimately familiar with your environment in a way that forced stimulation doesn’t allow.

The world becomes richer, the layers start to peel back, and you see things for what they really are, in all their wholeness, in all their contradictions, and in all their unfamiliarity. You learn that there are other things you are capable of paying attention to than just what makes the most noise on the surface.

Alone but not lonely: how to utilize solitude

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Aytekin Tank

Written by

Founder at www.JotForm.com || (contact: AytekinTank@JotForm.com)

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +682K people. Follow to join our community.

Aytekin Tank

Written by

Founder at www.JotForm.com || (contact: AytekinTank@JotForm.com)

The Startup

Medium's largest active publication, followed by +682K people. Follow to join our community.

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