The Benefits of Solitude: How Time Spent Alone Can Improve Our Health and Well-Being

Boosting Your Mental Health by Mastering the Art of Being Alone

As I walked alone on a quiet, winding trail, the path was hard to follow and slick with snow. But the sun felt warm on my face and I couldn’t help but feel grateful for the opportunity to be out in nature. It wasn’t long before I missed my partner, but I found comfort in knowing that I was visiting my sister who I don’t see often.

Despite feeling wide-ranging emotions including curiosity, anxiety and joy, it was a welcome period of solitude. It allowed me to clear my mind and return to civilization feeling calmer and more focused than when I had set out. Solitude is inevitable for many of us. Adults in the UK and US spend around one-third of their waking lives alone and that number only increases as we get older. In many places, we live alone in greater proportions than ever before. A recent survey of 75 countries even showed that 17 of them have more than 25 per cent solo households.

As social creatures, research has historically pointed us away from time alone. But now, more people are spending time away from the crowd and even seem to crave it. There is evidence to suggest that alone time can be good for our health and well-being

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