Being lonely hurts — it can even negatively impact your health. But the mere act of being alone with oneself doesn’t have to be bad, and experts say it can even benefit your social relationships, improve your creativity and confidence, and help you regulate your emotions so that you can better deal with adverse situations.
“It’s not that solitude is always good, but it can be good” if you’re open to rejecting the idea — common in the west — that time by yourself is always a negative experience you’re being forced into, according to Thuy-vy Nguyen, an assistant professor in the department of psychology at Durham University, who studies solitude.
Time with your thoughts sans social distractions can also be restorative, build your confidence and make it easier for you to maintain boundaries, Ms. Roberts said. In addition, it can boost productivity, engagement with others and creativity, and a study published in Current Directions in Psychological Science found that brainstorming was enhanced when participants alternated between brainstorming alone and with a group.
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