Day 4: Enter the Void
Enter the Void to Isolate from Other Minds
Podcast: Art of Manliness
Author: Brett McKay
Solitude is when the mind isolates itself from the input of other minds and works through thoughts / problems on its own.
This singular line reshaped how I viewed solitude. I make it a point to spend time throughout the week away from people. I wouldn't consider myself to be an introverted person, but at times the amount of input can be overwhelming. News, television, Youtube, Instagram, Snapchat are all great tools to dial into the world around us. But there can be a feeling of being too dialed in. Too focused on what's going on around you, instead of listening to your inner voice.
Brett McKay interviews co-author Mike Erwin who wrote the book Lead Yourself First: Inspiring Leadership Through Solitude. Mike talks about solitude granting us 2 types of clarity:
Analytical Clarity: This type of clarity is gained when you take a timeout and allow information to be synthesized in your mind. If you spent all day researching the demographic data of new home buyers, making time at the end of your day to step away from your work and allow yourself to mentally make sense of what you've learned can lead to a discovery of a growing market trend. You have done this whenever you've worked on a difficult problem and when arriving to work the next day, the answer seems so simple.
Intuitive Clarity: This type of clarity comes from hushing the noise around us to find our internal voice. This is your gut. This is what tells you the right answer and making that decision feels solid. The buzz around us often interrupts that inner voice but solitude allows it to resurface.
This Labor Day weekend take some time to step away from the office and relax. Allow yourself an hour or two to completely disconnect. You don't have to be on top of a mountain meditating like monk, but something as simple as a walk alone can do wonders.