Take a Walk In the Park Day - Live Deliberately: Experiencing Solitude


Today is Take a Walk in the Park Day. This isn’t exactly about a park, but since I have 15 acres in the mountain of my own, I like to take walks there. This is from my book Life in 20 Square Feet: The Essays. It’s a collection of essays from my tiny house blog that includes a series I did on living more deliberately. 


September 9. 2013

Today's installment of the Live Deliberately series focuses on the idea of solitude. Solitude isn't a perfect word for what I mean. Rather, I suppose, it’s more a “quietness.”

Before we moved into our tiny house I was someone who needed constant external stimulation. I would watch TV and surf the internet at the same time. When I was working I needed the radio on in the office or I would go out of my mind with the silence. I was ready to move into the tiny house but I wasn't sure how separating myself from the noise would look like. In any case, I was going to throw myself into the woods and see what happened. Instantly, everything changed. Our house is on a mountain pretty far from even our closest neighbors. We are surrounded 356 days a year by the seasons and suddenly I realized that this connection to silence was the very thing I was missing in my life. 

As I have mentioned, tiny living was a platform to change our lives. Silence and meditation aren't included in most tiny house building plans and you don't need it to be a bona fide tiny house dweller, but I'll tell you that it can't hurt.

In my own solitude, I found a deep well of creative inspiration that wasn't able to be heard over the noise of my previous life. 

Solitude and silence don't have to have a spiritual or religious overtone, but they can. Silence is something that can be very personalized for you and your own journey. 

On the most recent r(E)vo Convo podcast with Andrew Odom (see footnote), we discussed this topic for just a moment. Drew brought up an interesting point. In our culture, we equate individual silence with negative energy. We see it as bad, introverted (which is not inherently bad but often considered so), or a signal that something is wrong. But I have found that silence reconnects me to myself and my spirituality in a way that was missing when I lived a more conventional life. 

In many ways, this kind of quiet solitude goes hand in hand with the simplicity of my new way of living. I can find meditation in my chores or a walk in the woods. I can work without the radio and I'm surprised at how easily the words flow. 

I can experience this quietness when I am not alone, too. Matt and I have learned that we don't always need to fill the silence when we're together. We can simply enjoy each other’s presence. 

Are you comfortable in the silence? How can you reach into solitude and find yourself?  

Odom, A. (2013, September 09). R(E)vo Convo Episode 39 – “Don’t Yuck the Yum" [Audio blog post]. Retrieved from http://tinyrevolution.us/2013/09/09/revo-convo-episode-39-dont-yuck-yum/


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