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on solitude

April 9, 2012
wendy brightbill

self portrait

hello friends. wow. i guess i stepped away from the blog for a while for a little breathing space. it wasn’t intentional, just needed. and today i feel like i am returning from a little mini vacation. i feel refreshed and ready to go. i have learned to listen when my heart says it needs a break.

i feel like i have learned so much about myself since the beginning of the year. it’s not some new revelation… it’s something that i have always known about myself, but just didn’t know how to embrace it.

i am an introvert.

for the longest time i didn’t want to be an introvert. i wanted to be cool like the extroverts who have all of the friends and seem so at ease in social situations. i love spending time with extroverts because they are just so much fun to be around. some of my best friends are extroverts. my husband is an extrovert. my daughter is an extrovert.

of course, i would have to say that over the years i have learned how to adapt, to be more outgoing. i am not afraid to talk to people like i used to be. and most people don’t even know that i am an introvert.

but it’s just been recently that i have been giving myself permission to be alone. permission to schedule in some solitude… and. not. feel. guilty.

hello my name is wendy. and i am an introvert. and i need time alone. and that’s ok.

wow. i have even been asking my family for alone time. which is huge when your husband always wants to be with you. and i have to remind him that it’s not personal, it’s just what i need. and then i can come back refreshed and ready to give more to my family. it’s even harder for me to explain to my six year old daughter who never wants to be alone. but i think that it is good for her to learn early that some people just need to be alone. who knows, she might marry an introvert.

what i have also realized is that i desperately need solitude in order to create. it’s one of the primary ingredients. and the quality of product that comes out of solitude is just so much better than when i am running around like a crazy person trying to get everything done.

i always thought of solitude as just being lazy. i guess that is my perfectionist side still trying to get out. but how can connecting with my heart and with god and with what is going on in my life be lazy?

i feel so much lighter now. so much more accepting of who i am and who i was created to be. and that feels amazing!!!

another thing i am learning is that being an introvert does not mean that i don’t desire connection. i just desire meaningful vulnerable real connection with people. and it’s funny, the more solitude i give myself, the more connected i want to be with other people. kind of bizarre huh?

i have been told that i should read this book. it’s all about this very subject. the video is very interesting. you should watch it even if you aren’t an introvert.

and if you are an introvert… i give you permission to make a little more room for solitude in your life.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. ann dickey permalink
    April 9, 2012 7:50 am

    what a lovely picture, what a lovely post. the world needs you just the way you are!!!

    btw… i am so very excited to attend your workshop on may 20th! being around creative people feeds my soul…. and your classes and workshops allows that for me… thank you.

    • April 9, 2012 9:27 am

      loved seeing you on saturday… you have no idea how excited i am that YOU will be at my workshop.

  2. April 9, 2012 7:55 am

    I could of totally written that whole post Wendy.

    So funny, I just read a blog post on that book. I grew up with others at times thinking I was being snobby because I was quiet. Like you I have gotten better with talking,etc. and getting older I am so much more just like this is who I am. so what? and it feels great.

    My kids have been home for spring break but I am looking forward to school tomorrow for the quiet! I crave it like you! xo

  3. April 9, 2012 9:01 am

    Wendy, thank you for this post, it has meant a lot to me.
    Big love
    AJ 🙂

  4. Laura permalink
    April 9, 2012 9:54 am

    Wendy this was a powerful post: an education for both extroverts as well as introverts.
    Very well thought out.

  5. April 10, 2012 8:11 am

    Hello my name is Emily and I am an introvert too!! Making time for myself has always been a challenge – but since my daughters are grown adults it is somewhat easier. I remember staying up late after the girls had gone to sleep – just for some quiet me time. I still do that when I’ve spent the evening with them. My brain will not settle down enough for me to sleep unless I have my alone time. Thanks Wendy- it’s nice to know a fellow introvert.

  6. Karen Dunn permalink
    April 10, 2012 9:49 am

    this post and today’s about shame are amazing. I don’t normally comment on blogs, and am in fact unsubscribing from many – and the primary reason is that they are not personal, just parties and such. No connection for me. Not that those blogs are not good – just not for me. All of that is to say that you’ve surely struck some chords; ones that I needed to hear. I was thinking right before I read your writing about shame, about how I might do a piece (of art) that reflects my shame and anger (childhood abuse). Also I’m given a good deal of grief from my family about my need for quiet and solitude. Like it’s a fault!

    So, thank you. You’re made a strong connection here, and I appreciate your sharing.

    Karen

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