Time to embrace solitude, pursue individual development

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LETTER: The situation in the last six to nine months due to the Covid-19 pandemic has made people think about how much we need each other. The digital era, however, has allowed people to connect, communicate and interact in many ways.

Are these technological mediums a substitute for real contact and physical connection? What is it that we need from face-to-face interactions that the Internet, messaging services and telephones can’t substitute? Is it acceptance or is it about feeling something tangible?

I think the answer is somewhere in between.

Essentially people, in a variety of forms, act as a support system bouncing emotions and physical comforts off from one another. But, are we forcing ourselves to be online and have purposeful conversations with others, just to avoid being lonely?

In my work, I have seen a huge introspective and self analytical movement — those trying to grasp the realities of this “new world”. This is where online advice can play a role by encouraging each other to be comfortable by themselves through a variety of activities, exercises and readings.

There is nothing wrong with being alone, though. Socially, it has become such a routine part of our lives to interact with others physically, whether having lunch, going for coffee or even at work.

What do people actually do when they are alone? Do they think about what they are doing or where they are going?

Covid-19 has made individuals think forwardly in ways that they had previously never had to. A recent survey I did at work saw a few individuals tell me that having only themselves for company was actually one of the hardest parts of their day.

Some started talking to themselves; some engaged in social media more and others still feel anxious and stressed, resorting to medication and unusual distractions.

I encourage those who spend a lot of time thinking alone and not interacting with many people to take this time to embrace the solitude. It won’t always be this way, so enjoy the time to pursue your own individual development and articulate how you intend to progress.

Lastly, what are we going to do when Covid-19 finally goes away? I believe it is very important to understand what people are doing with their lives and what they are going through now. For now, we should take control of our actions and not be scared doing it alone.

by RISH TANDAPANY.

Read more @ https://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters/2020/09/626750/time-embrace-solitude-pursue-individual-development

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