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Going Solo

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Ah, solitude Ò itÌs so very rare and yet it has so much to offer. The pleasure of hearing your own thoughts, observing others, or concentrating on your own project are just a few of the benefits of spending time alone. And yet, for some of us, itÌs something we never experience. Between family life, work, and socializing, the time for solitude can evaporate quickly.

This month, we encourage you to make a little time for yourself Ò and to spend it alone. If this seems like a shocking suggestion, then take a minute to consider what you might do on a solo outing. Are there things you enjoy that your family doesnÌt want to do? Are there moments when you wish you could go at your own pace? You could take a solo trip to an art museum, go canoeing on the lake, or stroll along the beach, listening to the waves.

Many people find that theyÌre more observant when theyÌre by themselves. You might discover that people-watching Ò on your own Ò is a great way to de-stress and take the focus off yourself. Your senses may be heightened for bird watching and wildlife viewing. Alone time might also be the perfect moment to practice photography or to hike to that remote hill that youÌve been wanting to sketch or water color.

Some hobbies call out for solitude. If youÌd like to try being on your own more, you might start up a journal, noting down your thoughts and feelings. Travel journals are excellent ways to note the things youÌve seen on your journey. Many people enjoy working on their memoir or writing letters to friends. You might combine the two by writing a letter of memories for your children or grandchildren, telling them about your childhood and sharing memories that you might not have related before. This is a powerful, valuable gift to leave the younger generation.

Plein aire paining Ò painting outdoors Ò is an excellent solo activity that lets you capture the beauty of the place youÌre visiting. You can treat yourself to dinner alone or pack up a picnic lunch to enjoy at a pretty spot along the trail.

Many outdoors programs encourage people to try camping solos, spending anywhere from one to 24 hours alone in the wilderness. Solos promote self-sufficiency, self-confidence, and a deeper connection with the natural world. If youÌre interested in a camping solo, be sure to take reasonable precautions Ò the idea is the challenge yourself, not to take undo risks. Always tell someone where youÌre going and when you plan to be back, even if youÌre only headed out on a short jaunt. You can also find plenty of solitude in an RV park or on a hike in a populous place. The goal is to put yourself in touch with your inner spirit and to observe the beauty thatÌs all around you.

If youÌd like to spend more time smelling the flowers or just take up a more contemplative hobby, then consider planning a solitary outing. After the noise and hubbub of everyday life, being alone can leave you feeling cleansed, calm, and collected. Your next camping trip is a great time to give it a try. It could be the best hour youÌve ever spent. After all, no one is better company than you are!
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