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Embracing Solitude to Combat Loneliness

By Ethan Skara, Grade 12
“A man can be himself only so long as he is alone, and if he does not love solitude, he will not love freedom, for it is only when he is alone that he is really free.” – Arthur Schopenhauer 
Into bed I went, it was another regular night. That was up until my heart started beating faster than a cheetah, I started sweating and opened my eyes to a pitch-black ceiling. “What happens when you die?我问自己. 我赶紧让自己冷静下来,得出结论:死亡是永远的黑暗. That did far from calm me down, though the little voice in my head asked another question, “What’s the point of all this, if it’s just darkness forever”? 我的孤独常常带来一些问题,让我思考很长时间, often leading me down a deeper hole of momentary despair.  
孤独是在座的许多人一生中都会有的一种感觉. 分手、失去爱人或搬到一个新地方都是引发这种感觉的事件. 然而,尽管孤独很普遍,但它经常被污名化,并被视为一种个人失败. Society says that as individuals, we should be surrounded by family and friends to make us feel, 不孤独. 我的经验, 然而, is that even though I surrounded myself with friends and family, I would feel lonely from time to time. 我努力理解孤独是一种情绪状态这一事实, rather than a physical one, 因此,我认为,如果我擅长的东西,我可以有更多的朋友, which would make me feel 不孤独.
在与朋友和家人相处之前,我需要学会孤独, so I wouldn’t feel misplaced in a social setting or group. 重要的是要承认,孤独的感觉并不是一种缺陷. At a certain time in my life, I felt ashamed to admit that I was lonely, 正如我所理解的,孤独是发生在“没有朋友”的人身上的事情.” It took me a long time to learn that there is meaning in my solitude.  
“I was ashamed of myself when I realized that life was a costume party, and I attended with my real face.——弗兰茨·卡夫卡  
直到我了解到孤独和孤独的状态也有它的好处. 孤独的最大好处是你没有其他人在身边, 因此,你可以不受评判地做事,这让你真正快乐, even if it’s different from others. You’re alone so there is no downside to doing what makes you happy.
但是身体上的孤独会导致消极的思维模式,而且会毁掉一个人对自己的看法. 当一个人处于孤独状态时,身体健康也常常被忽视, 通过锻炼, meditating or doing something that mentally frees you, 一个人在孤独的时候可能会经历一种对消极思维模式的适应能力.  
重要的是要记住,孤独不是一种永久的状态,享受孤独是可以的, but humans need to have social interactions with other humans. 校园里的学生人数很少,这让人们可以很容易地相互交流. 根据我的经验, I feared being alone all the time, which is why I felt solitude, even in social settings. 因此,在寻求他人之前接受孤独,我不会最终感到超然. I sought relationships with shared interests and values, ultimately creating a sense of belonging for myself.  
Loneliness is a natural part of the human experience, and it can teach us a great deal about the world and ourselves. Embracing solitude, 发展自我护理实践和建立有意义的联系可以让一个人拥抱孤独,保持真实的自我.