What People Do When They Are Alone

In the story of my journey as a therapist, I operate from basic assumptions. One of them is, I learn as much from people who seek help as they learn from me. I discover that what I consider most important to know about life I learn during therapy sessions.

As I immerse myself during sessions, I also spend much time listening to what people do when they are alone.  There is a diverse range of behaviors, thoughts, and feelings that occupy people's time when nobody else is around. It's a fascinating area of human activity that can reveal some clues to one's success or true condition in recovery.

We meet people, for example, who are so afraid to be alone. With low self esteem or weakened internal stability, they will do anything for distraction. Some are exercise fanatics, nose picking, or masturbating. Others dwell on past memories or create fantasies and unrealities to occupy their time. Some use drugs, smoking, technology, or even divination and some magic arts/solitary rituals as an escape.

Knowing what you really think, feel, and do when the guard is down helps you better understand your self. Such privilege of knowledge from others also helps me better understand my self, not only as a therapist, but also as a fellow human being.