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Culture & Religion

The Power of Being Lonely

While humans are social animals, does it follow that being alone is bad for us? An emerging body of research is suggesting that spending time alone, if done right, can be good for us.

What changes does the brain undergo when we are alone versus being in a group of people? “As much as it’s been exalted, our understanding of how solitude actually works has remained rather abstract, and modern psychology—where you might expect the answers to lie — has tended to treat aloneness more as a problem than a solution. That was what Christopher Long found back in 1999, when as a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts Amherst he started working on a project to precisely define solitude and isolate ways in which it could be experienced constructively.”


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