Which Do You Prefer? Solitude or Constant Contact?
By Sandy Schroeder
When people are asked to vote for solitude or constant contact, they usually have definite opinions. If you work in an office you may have a cubicle or work in open space. If you work independently, you may cherish your quiet work mode. At home, you may live alone or with a spouse or family, also shaping your feelings about solitude, and sanity, if there are small children involved.
Dr. Travis Bradberry, co-founder of TalentSmart, an agency that serves 75 percent of the Fortune 500 companies, takes a closer look at the whole issue pinpointing some of the benefits of alone time.
Open common space has mushroomed, but Bradberry says a recent study of 600 computer programmers at 92 companies found the most productive companies all used private workspaces to insure uninterrupted work.
What Solitude Can Do
Psychologists suggest alone time can foster mental and emotional health with an array of benefits.
Recharge station – There’s nothing like the bliss of total silence after the roar of the office or the din of small children. Stress just melts as the brain lets out a little sigh and begins to regain its balance.
Everything is your choice – Groups at work may dictate what you say, do, and wear. When you are alone, you can do what you choose. Of course, if you work alone for too long you may wind up living in your sweats, and be forced to get help from the fashion police to become presentable. Well, that may be an exaggeration, but you get the idea.
Confidence grows – When you work alone, you can think clearly minus outside input. Most of us benefit from feedback, but working independently lets you see what you can do on your own. Over time it can boost your trust in your own efforts.
You become more centered – Discovering you can be happy on your own can make you feel more complete. You may think more deeply and discover new facets of your own abilities, too.
You value others more – As you become independent, you can see more clearly what others bring to the relationship. After working alone you may welcome the interaction, and be better able to appreciate its value.
Productivity surges – If you enjoy being creative you know what can happen when a whole group of people descend on a project. There may be a lot of good ideas, but when it comes to shaping the final product, one person really has to direct the show.
Wherever you stand on the issue of solitude or constant contact, it's good to know how both work to take advantage of what they offer.
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