22 – Take Space, Give Space

We all need space, even the simple space to exist. But, we have other necessary space—space to work, rest, play, and learn. We need space to be alone—to enjoy peace, reflection, and rest.

Give others space, especially space to ponder their flaws or improve themselves.

When we need space the most we are most resistant to it. Just the same, when others need space and “alone time” it can seem like they need us to continue jabbering at them.

Solo time doesn’t always work on a schedule. It often just shows up without warning. Usually, that intense desire to be with other people is the indication that it is time not to be with other people. Whether your rest time or someone else’s rest time has come, quickly recognize it and grant it the necessary space.

Be alone at times. Enjoy the silence. It always takes time to get acclimated to solitude just as it takes time to get acclimated to long-term prayer. Solo time is a great time to pray—not reciting well-prepared messages to God, but simply to be alone with Him or to focus your heart on one specific need or idea.

Solo times can be remarkably empowering if you do not squander them on entertainment and ice cream.

In fact, the desire to watch movies and eat ice cream can often be a kind of “spiritual attack”, to lull us into complacency and just give up when we should be working, even working alone. Know the indications when solo time knocks on your door, whether it is time for solo work or solo prayer and Bible.

Never succumb to the urge to sit, do nothing, eat ice cream, and watch movies. That usually indicates a “second-in-line” friendship that is too strong in your life, even though it may not seem related on the surface. Such friends suck the energy from us causing the hunger to snack on junk food and “escape”.

Seek out healthy solo time. Guard it. Schedule it if you need. Steal away for brief moments if it surprises you midday. Once you have finished your internal maintenance during solo time, healthy friends will miraculously show up.