The Power of Solitude

 Posted by on 09/21/2012
Sep 212012
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Taking time out and setting yourself away from the rest of the world can improve your mana. I enjoy times when I can be alone and think. Everyone talks about how important it is to always surround yourself with people but never about the importance of solitude.

I enjoy my solitude.  I’m not saying I don’t enjoy hanging out with family and friends, but some the things I enjoy doing involve being on my own.

Hawaiians call this Ho’okahi which means – solitude and oneness.

Some of the things I enjoy doing are going on evening walks, lifting weights, reading a book, writing in my notebook, and playing my guitar.

During these times I feel like I create the most and have the deepest conversations with myself.  There are some weekend nights when I just feel like staying home to write or just be present.  During these times of solitude is when I nänä i ke kumu (look to the source).

Nänä i ke kumu

I agree with how Rosa Say expresses nänä i ke kumu;

Get grounded within your sense of self. Keep your Aloha at the surface of what you do daily, and celebrate those things that define your personal truths. To value Nānā i ke kumu is to practice Mahalo for your sense of self: Do you really know how extraordinary and naturally wise you are? Find out.

When we escape to be ho’okahi, is when we are able to reflect and look internally in to your spirits.  I mentioned that Hawaiians rely on the strength and mana from their ancestors to help us push through the hard times and to gain wisdom.

Nänä i ke kumu, is also used when we speak of looking towards our kupuna (elders) for answers and wisdom.  I would sit on my patio reading a book then something will trigger a teaching from the kupuna who have made an impact on my life.

I remember my dad telling me if you want to be a writer you have to constantly write and when you write you have to share your soul.  Speak to the na’au (soul).

Grandma Aipa, who was born and raised in Korea and moved to Hawaii after meeting my grandfather during WWII, embraced the Aloha Spirit.  She enjoyed playing the ukulele and singing which showed me the love and passion music can bring to your soul.

Lessons like these run through our DNA.  It’s during solitude when you are able to disconnect from the noise and really look into yourself.

Ways to have Ho’okahi

1. Wake up early. I mentioned this in a earlier post about what the most successful people do in the morning before breakfast.  I don’t wake up early because of this.  I was already a morning person from being raised by parents who would have breakfast cooking and music playing before the crack of dawn.  But in the mornings after doing my bed stretch and washing up, I begin my day.  I put on relaxing music, get my coffee going, and write.  Most of the times I don’t even turn on my computer, I just write on one of my legal pads.  I just write whatever comes to my mind for future use.

2. Exercise. I have a few workout partners, but some days I head to the gym on my own to do a little extra.  I love going to the gym.  I put my headphones in and go into tunnel vision mode.  This is a time to do something I feel so important alone and really embrace my health.  Because like I said before, without your health you won’t enjoy success for long.

3.  Go for a walk. I enjoy going on walks with my dog, Kona., especially at night time.  I let him guide the walk and point where he wants to go.  I let him sniff around and do his business.  I look up at the stars, listen to the birds fighting over space in the trees, wave to other people walking, and just be.  A lot of my thoughts for this blog comes from my evening walks.

4. Escape from the noise. This has been something new for me that I came across at Zen Habits.  Turn everything off.  Computer, TV, music, and whatever else that will cause a distraction.  I do that and sit in my apartment.  I either lose myself in a book or grab my slack key guitar and play the same tunes I always play.

We all need to take time to ourselves.  Mari and all my friends know this about me.  There are moments when I need to escape from everything and everyone and be alone.  I feel it’s a time to think about where I am in life, work on my goals and vision, and be in the moment of ho’okahi.

What do you do to escape and create solitude? Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below.


Mahalo. Aloha. A hui hou.

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