Everyone always talks about the importance of spending time with others in the church community, and they are right.
The body of Christ is a unit with countless functioning parts, so it is good for these members to grow with each other rather than grow in solitude. I even wrote a post about the negative effects of isolation <-Click here.
Even though spending time with others in community settings is encouraged (and I have encouraged it in previous blog posts, too), the thing that is not mentioned as often is the importance of taking a break from community settings to recharge and rest.
This is true for both introverts AND extroverts.
I want to share some of the benefits of alone time, but I would also like to preface it by saying that I would not recommend alone time for more than an hour or two per day, unless you’re a student doing homework.
Benefits of Spending Some Time Alone
1. Alone time gives you a chance to spend it with God
Have you heard of a “quiet time?” I tend to avoid using that phrase because it comes out of my friend’s mouth every five minutes (I’m kinda burnt out on that phrase; that doesn’t mean you have to be, too).
Time with God can be spent reading your Bible, praying, singing, or whatever other things you like to do with God.
This is your time to hear what God has to say and to get to know him better.
And I know that taking time to be intentional about your relationship with him makes him happy!
2. Alone time gives you a chance to do chores around the house
Some people get overwhelmed by how many chores they need to do, but not when you set aside time alone to do them!
I often find that doing chores while listening to music is very therapeutic. Especially when I don’t have to rush.
Also, doing chores gives you energy to do other things with your day.
I can’t tell you how many times I cleaned my house before starting homework because I knew that’s what it would take to get me started.
3. Alone time gives you a chance to exercise
Finding time to exercise is hard, but (same as doing chores) not when you set aside time alone to do it!
Additionally, exercise gives you energy and fights drowsiness throughout the day.
That’s why a lot of people exercise in the morning before doing anything else.
Read more about how exercise is beneficial here!
4. Alone time gives you a chance to take mental breaks
I don’t know what this may mean for you, but I know it’s helpful to simply watch a movie, play a game, bake cookies, or take a nap.
With school going on for the past 17 years of my life, I am always thinking about something.
Taking mental breaks is very helpful to clear the mind.
5. Alone time builds up your excitement for interacting with others again
The best part of alone time is feeling excited about going out in public to visit with others again.
As an introvert, this is especially exciting for me. It’s a huge step of growth and maturity to step out of the house to meet someone for coffee or to spend time with family and co-workers.
If you feel this way near the end of your alone time, you know you’ve spent it wisely and for the purpose of recharging.
Getting the Hang of Alone Time
Some people may struggle with budgeting time due to busyness or lack of organization.
Setting aside a specific time in your schedule until you get the hang of alone time may get the momentum going.
I recommend alone time should not exceed two hours each day, but should not be less than one hour. A good time indicator is being able to complete one task from the above list. Once that’s done, alone time can be over.
Next, I recommend scheduling this time in the morning. This may mean that you have to wake up earlier than you would like, but it will make a difference in your energy levels during the day.
Finally, I recommend using a calendar or set reminders on your phone. It may be that your best time for alone time is in the middle of the day. So be it. Just don’t forget about it.
On your calendar, mark which relaxing activity you are going to complete. Maybe it’s baking cookies. Maybe it’s working out. Maybe it’s doing the dishes. Maybe it’s spending time with God.
It’s also okay to do multiple things if it does not exceed your two hour limit.
Finally, make sure you have something lined up for after alone time.
Monitor Your Personal Growth as a Result of Alone Time
Once you get the hang of alone time, evaluate yourself on a monthly basis. Compare the before and afters: tiredness, energy levels, your mood, your interactions with others, etc.
I bet all of these things will improve.
Don’t forget about Jesus, too. He spent alone time with the Father. To read more about Jesus’ alone time and for what reasons, click here.
As always, you are welcome to worship with us here at the Inbound Church <–Click!