LAPC #238 – Alone Time

Some journeys in life can only be traveled alone.

― Ken Poirot

Alone time means time spent by an individual or a couple apart from others. It is often used to ground oneself, or to do something creative.

In the northern countries we are known for this need of alone time – but I strongly believe we all need it. We just have to watch for the signs… even if they are not always easily recognized. You might for example need some time away from other people when you are feeling short-tempered or getting easily irritated by minor things; feeling overwhelmed or overstimulated; having trouble concentrating or getting anxious about spending time with other people.

My own reasons for needing alone time originates from being an only child, and growing up close to the forests and fields – Nature holds all the beauty I need in life, and I have been given the gift to see and to listen, and to rejoice in it. I am very grateful.

Grounding yourself is when you stay connected to the present. Instead of getting lost in anxiety and reviewing a made-up version of reality in your head, grounding allows you to experience the moment you are in. It requires being connected to yourself and provides stability and calm even in challenging situations.

Nature is an unequalled source to pour from – turn off social media, open your windows and let your eyes and mind wander with you on the path you choose. Personally, my favourite path is the one with grass in the middle…just like my childhood paths.

I feel better when I am surrounded, not by humans, but by trees.

― Michael Bassey Johnson

For many of us books and reading fill this alone time well. Reading gives us the possibility to wander into other worlds, while sitting comfortably in our own chair.

For me, photography, writing and sketching works well too, and so does painting.

I know that I need serious alone time to be able to function. For this purpose, I finally realised an old dream – A Room of My Own.

We need solitude, because when we’re alone, we’re free from obligations, we don’t need to put on a show, and we can hear our own thoughts.

― Tamim Ansary

Finding time to be alone can have a number of key benefits. Some of these include personal exploration, creativity and social energy. If you are not used to spend time alone, plan that time into your schedule and make sure that other people know that they shouldn’t interrupt you during that time. It might be helpful too if you plan out what you want to do –

This week in February, every year, I want my husband to travel for some days, so that I can replant my houseplants, alone. I can plan it as I want to, I can emerge myself in facts on the different species…

…and end up with revived plants and cuttings en masse – cheers to new life!

This year I also bought some airplants – they need no soil, just a piece of bark, some Spanish moss, and some sprinkling of water. At the same time I get the joy of creating interesting new arrangements.

New projects are always around the corner, but, I also try hard to just BE. Do nothing. Exist here and now. This is difficult. I wonder – do you manage it? Some good advice would be much appreciated.

Blessed are those who do not fear solitude, who are not afraid of their own company, who are not always desperately looking for something to do, something to amuse themselves with, something to judge.

~ Paulo Coelho

When I am completely by myself, entirely alone or during the night when I cannot sleep, it is on such occasions that my ideas flow best and most abundantly. Whence and how these ideas come I know not nor can I force them.

~ Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

A Special thank you to Bren for her soft and magical challenge last week! We learned new things and new experiences make us grow. Now we are looking forward to seeing your Alone Time posts. What are your thoughts, and what do you use your alone time for? Be sure to tag Lens-Artists and link to my original post.

I have been made aware of pingbacks not working, so please, send your link in the comment section! It seems the reason it’s not working might originate in the change to JetPack on my phone.

Next week, Tina will be hosting, and her theme will be – Finding Peace. Please visit her beautiful site for inspiration.

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  24. Love this post…your image from KyrkoMosse, your Rooommof your own, the airplants especially! Will put a post together later 😊

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  31. Wonderful gallery Ann-Christine. I particularly liked the dirt road, the still life with pen and books and the view through the old wooden building. I was going to pass this week but I managed to incorporate your selection with a monochrome piece. Thank you very much for hosting.

    Monthly Monochrome: Alone Time

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  34. What a beautiful post Ann-Christin. Beautiful photographs too. I am jealous of all your wonderful houseplants. I am a better outside gardener than inside one – my inside plants get neglected.

  35. What a beautiful, inspiring post, AC. I love your images, the quotes, and your wise thoughts about solitude. Like you, I need it on a regular basis and believe I’m all the better for those quiet moments. I love your ”room of your own”–what a perfect spot to look out at the world and create whatever your heart desires. You are certainly a wonderful gardener. Your plants are thriving and very happy. I loved this glimpse of your world and how you enjoy solitude. Here’s a link to my post. We have many similar ways to enjoy our alone time.

    Lens-Artists Challenge #238: Alone Time

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  37. Beautiful post, A-C. You have many creative activities for your alone time. Like Tina, I am not a gardener, but I sure respect the skill of people who have the skills to make their gardens grow.
    I really love that still life of the books with the pen. Wonderful processing and composition.

  38. Being an only child vs a child with 4 brothers is not so different when it comes to needing alone time Ann-Christine; trust me! I love all of the activities you’ve so beautifully illustrated (except gardening because unfortunately I have a black thumb!). Your images are beautiful – especially the last, which is especially so. I had to smile at you ”encouraging” your husband to leave as you ready the plants for spring!

    • Thank you, Margaret! I might almost have guessed you were an only child as well. There is a certain feel when you read posts. I can usually tell if people have children or not too.
      So glad you liked the photos too, even if I have posted half of them before.

    • I am glad you like the challenge, Sofia, and I kind of thought we would share some interests. And the alone time – will come to you as well. You are still working and have a young family. I didn’t have that much time until I retired. Except for that week in February, reduced to weekends when I was working.
      I feel warm inside hearing you liked my desk. That means much to me ♥

  39. Love your post!!! I share your words and the images accompany them very well, although my favorites are the one with the window to the forest and the books/notebooks with your pen.

  40. You touched me here! I so relate! Also an only child of older professional parents. Also atavistically Northern still in spite of a lifetime in Australia. For the last few years rather ‘grounded’ here in the country as I cannot be vaccinated . . . *laugh* Since I am a true Gemini there ARE two of us > no boredom! Seriously speaking, people know me as hugely lively . . . but the last few years have had an attraction of their own . . . no appropriate dress or hairdo or makeup needed to sit in my, library, looking out at the park, and talking to people throughout the world, not even a car needed! Actually, much love my days at the moment tho’ am due for a few changes . . . beautiful photos Ann-Christine . . . and warm hugs > Sweden . . .

    • Warm hugs back, dear Eha! I always look forward to your thoughtful comments and the…”no appropriate…” sentence is just made for loving! I did not truly understand about the Gemini though…your might clarify to me if you want to! The idea of a library hits me again – I know you wrote about it before, but it must be wonderful to have one of your own.

      • Well, Gemini (June-child) is that of twins – I know a number and all of us feel there are two ‘beings’ in the body! In that case one cannot get bored . . . just at times angry at thr other 🙂 ! Oh, the ‘library’ . . . well, I have always ‘lived’ a large part of my life in my study . . . which has every inch covered with books !!! Library!!! Love it – mine is pretty small at the moment but overlooks a lot of park greenery and is very, very quiet . . . !

      • My mother was a Gemini too, I am glad you explained the feeling inside, because I could not figure out the meaning of your words before. I don’t know how my mother ffelt about that, and now it is too late to ask.

  41. Your images depicting your alone time is so right on, Ann-Christine. I believe photography is a great way to spend and search for alone time. Because my Sunday Stills post is about feeding the birds this week, I went with a different perspective for alone time. Hopefully my post will properly link with yours tomorrow.

  42. I loved everything about this, AC. I can relate. Alone time is instrumental in truly making us who we are. The photo of the rose is my favorite. And the path with the grass in the middle, so inviting. Fantastic that you have a week, every February to spend with your plants. That sounds like heaven. And I feel better surrounded by trees too. Thank you for this chance to reflect on Alone Time this week.

  43. Nice theme Ann-Christine and thanks for giving us a glimpse of your various interests! Inspiring 🙂. I like people but I love solitude. But I don’t know if I am as blessed as the one Paulo Coelho is talking about, for I love my solitude to be able to do everything I feel like doing 🙂 (although sadly, most of it is occupied by the internet since I laid my hands on a smartphone).

    • Ah…I recognise that issue with phones. I never thought I would get addicted to them, but I think I am. Sometimes I deliberately leave it at home – to know life is possible without it!

    • Looking forward to your post, Dawn! And hope you will like air plants too. I put them on bark, but they can also sit under or inside glass with beautiful stones a.s.o

  44. That country lane with the grass down the middle is so ‘you’, Ann-Christine. Life in the ‘potting shed’ looks good too. I’m not half so productive with my alone time but I love it. Often on that roof terrace of mine, with a book which doesn’t always get read.

Halva verket är läsarens - så, vad säger Du? As the second half is the reader's - I'd love to have Your line!

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