I read a leadership book and in the very first chapter it talks about the importance of solitude. How appropriate! If you’re going to be a great leader, you have to carve out time every day for solitude. And clarity will never come without it!!
I know that’s hard to capture these days, but if strong leaders, many with the weight of the world on their shoulders, can find time every day to be alone and quiet, we should be able to do it.
When our kids were little, it meant getting up early and also prioritizing their nap time, for their good and for mine.
When they were older, I had time when they were in school, but even then I had to be intentional and use my time wisely. Even if we have time alone, it doesn’t mean we use it wisely.
I’ve seen so many through the years that hate to be alone, hate to be quiet, really do not know what to do with themselves. And it’s sad.
I think we trained our kids with nap/quiet times when they were home. When they outgrew naps, we still had quiet/rest time. When they were teenagers, Sunday afternoon, after church and lunch, it was quiet time. Everyone had to go to their room and be quiet for one hour. Read. Think. Lay there. Sit there. They hated it!! But we were firm on that. We needed it and they needed it even though they didn’t think so.
I think it has served them well. I’m pretty sure all of them are ok with solitude when they take it. And usually we have to take it. Maybe it was training them early on when they hated it, but as parents we knew it was good for them. You do make them do things they hate because it’s good for them, right? Or maybe, it’s the result of other things. But I’m glad they can stand the quiet. We can’t live in the noise of daily life and not suffer the results.
Maybe it’s your morning time, but 10 minutes won’t be enough.
Maybe it’s your workout time where you tune everyone out and actually work out instead of talk to everyone around you and you get clarity that way.
Maybe it’s the middle of the day with the kids in their room or you close your office door or you get in your car and ride down a country road.
Whatever you have to do, just do it for your own good mental health. And the good of those around you.