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Reflections On Time & Solitude

19 Jul

Well, the squeezers and their parents have all left and I’ll miss them horribly in about a minute, but right now I’m surrounded by blissful silence and I’m just soaking it all in. The quiet is spacious and nourishing, and my inner BR is rolling around in it like a puppy in clover!

It’s funny how much our relationship to time and solitude changes as we move into different phases of our lives.

When I was an adolescent, I went through a period when I had to have people around me.  I felt slightly anxious being by myself. I even think there was a time in college when I actually studied better if I knew one of my roommates was in the apartment too.

Then of course there’s that blur of years juggling kids and work (friends get short shrift, that’s for sure), where you can barely find time to brush your teeth, let alone sit and think your thoughts.  I think that’s when I first started to crave alone time and silence. My idea of a great time in those days was when my husband took over and I could go to lunch by myself with a good book. There were times when that was even better than a date night with him or a tete-a-tete with a friend!  I also loved crossword puzzles as the perfect, shut-out-the-world activity.

As the kids got older and less labor-intensive, the work side of life got more interesting and demanding.  But there was also more time for being a couple, hanging with friends, contributing to community and getting individual R & R time, too.  But it was - how to describe this? - very full.  Things got so busy sometimes, that my life was a blur of rich, meaningful activity whizzing by, with very little time to reflect on any of it.

Now, in my 60’s, I’m still a pretty social animal, but to a large extent, I love quiet, solitude, and clear, clean space.  The absence of clutter is a relatively recent development and seems to be the physical counterpart to needing more space in my head.  I crave it almost as much as I do the quiet. (My kids are baffled by the new, orderly me - who are you?, they ask!)

It’s just a different time of life, I suppose, where reflection, silence, space and peace are very precious… and more available, luckily, than they used to be.  I can see why the research shows that this is generally a happier time of life, all things being equal.
So bring on the chaotic, rambunctious interruptions of delicious, affectionate, demanding toddlers!  As long as it’s bracketed by a little solitude, where I can reflect on their amazingness, all by myself!  It’s all good, as they say.

By the way, the new, July issue of ImagiNews is out - this is the very content-rich and juicy quarterly journal of Imagery International, and it’s full of clinical wisdom, inspiring stories, reviews, research and networking opportunities.  Check it out and click here.

There’s also an excellent new Summer issue from ACEP (The Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology) - also a quarterly magazine, called The Energy Field. Those of you who are curious about this exciting and burgeoning new field of energy psychology methods and tools should check it out here. This journal also has news, good articles, book reviews, research updates and excellent networking opportunities.

OK, that’s it for now.  Take care and be well.


Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award