Human beings are social animals. We cannot survive without social interactions. However, being in the middle of a pandemic, its important for everyone to limit their social interaction. It is a fact that remaining isolated for a long time can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Spending too much time alone is found to be associated with a shorter life span and a higher level of heart disease. However, in times like this, our only hope is to stay locked indoors until the normalcy is restored.
Isolation is not all that bad. It has a positive side as well. In fact, if you look closely, its actually a gift for those who got so busy in their lives that they didn’t have time for their families or to enjoy simple things in life. The coronavirus pandemic has put our lives on pause with no foreseeable end in sight. To stay at the top of our physical and mental health, we need to learn how to make the most of the time we have at hand. We need to see the best in the situation we are facing right now. this is the only way to come out stronger when the threat has passed.
How isolation is a blessing in disguise
people have been isolating themselves from the wider world before the coronavirus pandemic hit. The majority of the times, it was to:
- Escape plagues
- Christianity hermitage
- Become an anchoress
Before you start getting sick of staying indoors and isolated, remind yourself of the reason you are at home. It is to keep you and your family safe from exposure to the deadly virus. In fact, remaining isolated will help you overcome depression, improve your memory, strengthen your relationships, and learn new things. Today, we are going to discuss how isolation is the blessing in these dark times. So, let’s get into it.
How isolation is a ray of hope in dark times
According to Coronavirus facts and stats, the only cure of Covid-19 disease we know of is maintaining social distance and limiting interactions to our immediate family members. The best way to practice social distancing is to isolate at home and go out only when it is necessary. Use your time at home in the following ways to reap endless benefits:
Strengthen your memory
According to studies conducted by Harvard University, spending time alone offers an array of psychological benefits. One of the striking revelations made by them shows when a person experiences something on his own, he develops firmer and long-lasting memories as compared to carrying out activities in groups.
Neurological studies support this phenomenon as when a person relies on his own abilities to overcome a challenge, he doesn’t rely on others to verify the details. This allows a person to develop and retain the complete memory of a particular incident. This way a person relies on his own memories when it comes to facing a similar challenge in the future. This means spending time alone enables you to build a stronger understanding of the events you go through. Moreover, you can bring your experience into play when you are faced with a similar challenge in the future.
It has also been revealed that our ability to remember things start to deteriorate with age. You can delay this process by spending time alone with yourself.
Strengthen your relationships
Everyone was busy in chasing their goals before the Coronavirus pandemic brought the entire world down to halt. We had no time to invest in our relationships and spend time with our loved ones. This is one of the biggest gifts, isolation has blessed us with. Today we have unlimited time to spend with our family. If you want your relationships to work, you need to take some time out for cultivating them.
However, to strengthen your relationships truly, you need to understand yourself first. You need to identify your personality and interests and use them to connect with your loved one. Isolating from the wider world doesn’t mean that you need to let go of your loved ones. In fact, isolation will teach how important these relationships are. This will make you more grateful for having friends and loved ones who care for you. This will help you develop genuine bonds and real attachments. Use the time you have at hand to call that friend you haven’t seen in ages or to play board games with your son. Use this time to cherish your relationships.
You become more empathetic
Harvard University has discovered that spending lone time between social interaction makes you more empathetic. It increases your sense of empathy and makes you more sensitive towards other’s beliefs, thoughts, and emotions. Empathy means the ability to connect and relate to what other people feel. This sense strengthens when we spend some time away from the wider world in our own company. Being able to understand people around us even better is a gift in itself.
Why this happens is still a mystery. However, this phenomenon might be associated with the right supramarginal gyrus, the part of the brain that controls our empathetic feelings. This area of the brain plays an important role when it comes to distinguishing our feelings from those of others. It is believed that spending some lone time strengthens the supramarginal gyrus. Lone time improves Gyrus’s sense of a person’s emotional state and feelings. This adds to your ability to step into another person’s shoes. Being able to feel for people is one of the best gifts, isolation offers.
Isolation adds to your ability to learn
It turns out that trying to learn in a group isn’t as effective as it is to learn alone. The reason is, isolation is found to be linked with higher concentration capacity. If you are a student and you want to study for a test, you need to go into hermit-mode to achieve your desired grades. There are two studies conducted by NYU and the University of Virginia that support this fact. These studies have revealed that studying all alone is better for your grades.
Social hermit-time adds to your ability to retain the information you have acquired through studying. It also enables you to reproduce this information during test situations. As mentioned earlier isolation is associated with stronger memory and a good memory is a key to success for the students. Therefore, spend some solo-time and save yourself from social distraction. So, bail out the next time your friend invites to a group study session. Trust yourself because according to science you will do much better on your own.
You overcome depression
This finding applies to the majority of adolescents. However, in some cases, it also applies to full-grown adults. According to research, teens suffering from depression can relieve their depressive symptoms by spending some time on their own. this keeps them away from the ever-growing peer pressure to overachieve and to keep up with trends of their time. they might not find it pleasant, but it will help them a lot to stay at the top of their consciousness and the chances of them falling in the darkest pit of depression will reduce. However, it is important to keep these periods of isolation brief.
According to scientists, the amount of time spent alone has to be in moderation. It shouldn’t be too little or too much. They suggest a strategic approach that focuses on complementing social experience. you don’t need to separate yourself from the world altogether. You need to focus on your mental health by isolating for small periods to enjoy your life to the fullest.
You become more creative
Spending time alone away from the wider world provides us with a lot of time to be innovative and creative. This happens because our mind tends to fly wildly when we separate ourselves from the judgments of others. Trying to imitate the actions of the people around us is a part of human nature. It makes us feel included. However, this also limits our will to push our boundaries and achieve something out of the ordinary.
This is the reason why solitude is often associated with creativity. According to experts, isolation allows your mind to focus on the tasks you are currently working on without getting distracted by sexual and social matters that cause dissipation of energy and concentration. Solitude releases us from the unconscious desire to fit in. this is one of the reasons why some of the greatest artworks we have today came into being in little garrets. However, everything works in moderation. Separating yourself from the world for an extended period might harm your mental and physical health.
Isolation can be a blessing if you think of it as one, especially in the challenging times we are faced with. It not only allows us to escape the disease but gives us time to reconnect with our families, hobbies, and all that we never had time to do. It also helps us strengthen our minds and body. So, don’t feel bad if you have to spend some time alone. Remember the cause you have isolated yourself for and think of the positive aspects of isolation.