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Getting on with Life

Updated on May 22, 2014

Life Goes On and On and On

The Price of Solitude

Socializing may be the next best thing to peanut butter and jelly. For some of us, solitude must then be on the menu with caviar, foi gras and champagne. It's hilarious to discover no part of your life remains an unopened, unread book thanks to the addictive social media that grinds away hour by hour each tiny detail of our beings. That's okay for some. For writers, solitude remains a necessity. For some writers, solitude of the type demanded of the cloistered would be grand. There's a price for solitude when your mind remains actively engaged in worldly interests. That price is usually paid in constant interruptions of your precious time and acute sense of need for quiet time. Can you write a short story with the cacophony of jack hammers as background music?

Quiet Time for the Precious Few

The reality of sociability today is that it's in overkill mode. How many friends do we really need? How often do we really need them? It's humorous to consider the image of a single person with 900 Facebook friends all clinging desperately to their "friend" online.

The invention of the cell phone and texting has done more to drive normally rational adults to distraction and on the verge of insanity. Another humorous image: everyone with a cell phone to their ear as aliens from Planet Zenoba land. You won't hear their space craft land. How can you with all those voices yammering away on cell phones about the minutest details of their flotsam lives?

The "fabric of our lives?" a piece of plastic with a tiny screen and a keyboard ready at any moment to sound the "ring tone" calling all of the desperately needy to the sound of a friendly voice. Only those who prize their solitude laugh at this unusual trait of human behavior.

Getting on with Life

For some, the idea that life is a huge span of time where in we exert our best efforts to succeed at whichever of our talents we rely on to provide income, self-confidence and a sense of achievement eludes them completely.

It's not amusing to endure the insufficiently mentally mature who expect it to "always go their way." They miss the one fact of life some learn the hard way: Set up expectations and you can count on disappointments 90% of the time. The problem with this stream of conscious thought lies with an inability to control the world around you. Those who prize solitude have a very different concept. Accept what you know you can't change and get on with your life.

How to Get On with Life Without Angst

The blissfully solitary enjoy an unusual strength the social butterflies of the world don't. We can turn off negativity and even, at times, turn negativity into productivity. To get on with your life, it's necessary to first know who you are and what your goals are. Yours. Not your Mom's, Dad's, siblings' or mates. Most humans are born unhinged anatomically from other human beings. It stands to reason that our two feet are intended to guide us on the right path forward. To get on with life without angst, is to deny the existence of the forceful, the too influential, the miserable and the negative. That's a huge job for the solitary. Yet, it is doable. Liken it to being a soloist on a stage. Does going it alone cause immediate angst? Seek out the reasons why. There are several tips to learning to get on with life even when life seems overwhelming.

1. Resolve issues that can be resolved

2. Practice the art of impeccable timing

3. Make mistakes once and learn from them

4. Practice patience and tolerance to produce emotional strength

5. Be good to yourself once a day

6. Make time for peace, quiet and solitude

7. Eat when you are hungry, sleep when you are tired and listen to the messages your body sends

8. Learn to say "NO" and mean it when it's most appropriate

9. Draw from the well of your own experience often

10. Avoid conflict but not truth or facts. Growth is dependent on truth and facts, not anger and resentment.

Bless It and Set It Free

The best way to understand the importance of issues we face is to put it in future perspective. Will the issue be as important 20 years from now? If not, bless it and set it free on the wind. In our youth, we find too often we stew over that which is considerably petty. In two decades, the same issue becomes a source of amusement. The other way to determine the seriousness of issue is to consider whether or not it's life threatening. Philosophically, it's easier to let go of angst when we realize it's not going to end our lives as we know it.

Life Goes On and On and On

Grief is a difficult emotion to process. Only the passage of time can heal grief. Know that with the full turn of the calendar to a new year, your grief will have changed radically. This applies to the death of a loved one, abandonment, heartbreak or a breach of trust. Be kind to yourself through your phase of grief. Look deeply into yourself at your feelings of loss. Most of us find that feelings of loss are directed inwardly to ourselves and less toward the actual loss of the loved one. Feel sorry for "their" loss, not yours if you want to get on with your life. Anger is a natural part of loss. We feel a sense of being violated or victimized by loss. This can be reversed by realizing that there's now a big gap that will be filled if we allow it to occur naturally. Even the most difficult losses have some worth. It forces us to get on with our lives. This is where solitude emerges as the Balm of Gilead. In solitude, we can allow our thoughts to wander where they may.

Mental Wonderland

The value of finding our own private space is the ability to dream your dreams and imagine unimaginable beauty. It's a refreshing break from jack hammers, white noise, cell phone conversations at extreme decibels and the lack of attention while texting. Enter your own mental wonderland for fifteen minutes a day. Choose a break from the hectic chaos and get on with life on a more serene level. Nothing is as important to your mental well being and sense of purpose.


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    • ValKaras profile image

      Vladimir Karas 14 months ago from Canada

      I absolutely agree, Eleanore.

    • Ewent profile image

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 14 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Some noise that is pleasing to the psyche may be soothing. I just find that many people today suffer from information overload. They are continually expected to fill their brains on a second by second basis which is beginning to show a tendency toward inability to focus attention and develop concentration skills.

      Each species on planet earth fulfills the ecological design and balance. We don't mind the meowing of a kitten. But, the Chinese during WWII knew the value of noise overload as a method of torture and brain washing. That is the real danger. Too much noise that crowds out reason and rational thinking.

    • ValKaras profile image

      Vladimir Karas 14 months ago from Canada

      Eleanore - Maybe technology is not to blame, as there have always been those who thrived on noise, distraction, escape from themselves. Somehow, I always saw world as complete - with thinking folks and fools for a balance.

      Finally, if it was not for the looks of an alligator, who would see as cute a playful kitten?

      So, maybe noise is O.K. after all, what do you say?

    • Ewent profile image

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 14 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      I think at present technology has one very serious downside: total lack of quiet time.

      I don't own a cell phone and never will. My feeling is that as a writer, the constant jabbering and jangling of a cell phone would be a huge distraction to my need for quiet time to write.

      I rarely feel bored. I believed when I retired from private industry I would be bored. In reality, I feel as if I have the real "me" back and can go exploring in the world I live in without reservation or clock watching. I am finally free of the tick tock of the clock always hammering at my brain.

      For me, solitude is imperative. Solitude when balanced with human interaction provides adequate life fulfillment. Or, so it seems to me.

    • ValKaras profile image

      Vladimir Karas 14 months ago from Canada

      Eleanore - It feels good to visit friends after being visited, and I liked your welcome that consisted of some impressive and promising titles. After reading this one I know I'll continue.

      So much wisdom in it.

      To respond to one particular point - yes, solitude is like mental food to thinking people, as it offers an ambient in which we can meet that best of us, and even discover some more of it.

      From that perspective I could never understand how could anyone get "bored". Don't they have themselves for a good company?