People who love solitude but also maintain strong friendships have these 6 traits

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Do you savor those rare moments you get to spend all on your own?

If you do, you might find it hard to believe that, for many people, the thought of being all alone can be really off-putting and intimidating.

A lot of folks out there would never be on their own if they could avoid it. And here you are, trying to get alone time whenever you can!?

The wonderful truth is that there are all kinds of people out there, and that’s lucky because it takes all kinds to make the world the rich and beautiful place it is.

In this article, we’re going to talk about a particular set that you may be a part of, or you may never have heard of before. These are people who love time on their own but also love to spend time with friends and relatives.

They value their relationships, and yet they choose not to surround themselves with people all the time. Instead, they take a lot of time for themselves, but when they’re with others, they put a lot into their interactions.

So, let’s take a deep dive into the people who love solitude but also maintain strong friendships by looking at these six traits that they tend to share.

1) They’re not excessively extroverted.

That’s right, you’ve certainly guessed that these people are going to be extroverts.

Psychologists look at extroversion and introversion not so much as an either/or but a sliding scale, And in the case of people who love solitude, this is a clear introverted tendency.

Introverts are generally much more solitary and reserved, while extroverts are definitely more outgoing and energetic.

I also like to think of introverts as people who tend to find social interactions complicated, exhausting, and mentally and emotionally draining. Extroverts find social interactions stimulating and energizing.

So, while extroverts tend to recharge with people, introverts recharge on their own, away from people.

But that doesn’t mean they don’t appreciate the important people in their lives. 

Introverts generally prefer to have smaller circles of friends but many of them put an incredible amount of effort into those relationships that they do have.

So if you encounter people who love to spend time alone but also maintain strong friendships, they’re likely to be introverts but not too far down the scale.

Or they may be ambiverts, people who fall right in the middle and show signs of both extroversion and introversion in an intriguing mix of behaviors.

2) They’re great one-on-one.

If you had to think about whether you enjoyed socializing one-on-one or in a bigger group, which would you choose?

I know that I personally enjoy both, but I do find chatting in larger groups noticeably tiring, whereas I can go one-on-one all night.

Hey, you know what I meant!

I also know that I’m definitely more of an introvert, and a host of free internet tests have all confirmed this. Still, that doesn’t mean I spend all my time alone.

I really enjoy and appreciate meeting people and talking one-on-one or in smaller groups. OK, I wouldn’t say that three’s a crowd, but four?

Honestly, four is such a weird dynamic. 

With three people, you always have all three people involved in the conversation because there’s nowhere else to go. 

But if two people start to get into something really important or personal, the other two might start up a different conversation. However, theirs might not be so interesting, so one of them might float between the two conversations, and the other could feel ignored.

While this is truly what I think, I also wrote it to illustrate how introverts tend to think a lot (too much!?) about social behavior, and this is why we get tired.

But if it’s just you and a person you trust and really appreciate, there are no dynamics to think about, and you can focus all your attention on having a really good chat and great connection with the other person. 

3) They’re great listeners.

I feel like I just explained this in the last point, but here’s a summary.

People who like to be alone but also value their friendships highly tend to be incredible one-on-one.

They can give their focus to the other person wholly and they do this by listening closely and carefully. They really lean into conversations, getting absorbed and being very thoughtful and considerate about what the other person is saying.

That also allows them to give a lot of great advice or help a friend in need.

These incredible connections they build go both ways. They highly value their friends because they don’t like to interact with too many other people, and the friends feel heard and appreciated.

So it’s a win-win situation all around!

4) They love to commune with nature.

Spending time in nature, as long as it’s positive and stress-free and you’re not being chased by hungry wolves, is a really positive experience.

Numerous studies have discovered important health benefits related to communing with nature. It can “lower blood pressure and stress hormone levels, reduce nervous system arousal, enhance immune system function, increase self-esteem, reduce anxiety, and improve mood.”

In Japan, this concept even has a name – shinrin-yoku or “forest bathing” – and it’s taken seriously.

The thing is, though, that lots of people would shudder at the idea of being out in the forest, especially if they were alone. 

Some feel like this would be so foreign to them and unknown that they wouldn’t deal with it well. Others would worry about the silence and lack of stimulation, no doubt because they’re extroverts who really get stimulated by people.

But lots of people who love their solitude will slip off into natural settings habitually to get more than just a breath of fresh air. They feel peaceful, stimulated, refreshed, and uplifted by spending time in nature.

And when they return to the human-built world, they have more energy and good vibes to invest in their relationships.

5) They’re observant.

There are a lot of good things about spending time on your own. These are mostly known to introverts and unknown or underappreciated by extroverts.

One of them is that people learn to pay attention to things around them when they’re on their own. 

This is especially true for extroverts, who are normally focused on socializing and miss a lot of what goes around them if it’s not directly linked to the humans they’re currently talking to.

When you spend a lot of time on your own, you’re generally able to see deeper into things because your attention is not being pulled in different directions by people with their different dynamics and demands.

This helps people become more observant of smaller details.

It’s also interesting to note that this skill can be brought back into the world of socialization and can make people more observant of others.

So people who spend a lot of time alone, rather counterintuitively, can often notice things and understand more about others than people who don’t.

6) They’re friendly… to a point.

People who value both their solitude and their friendships have to strike a delicate balance between the two.

They have no choice but to do this if they want to enjoy the benefits of both great relationships and amazing alone time.

So something you might notice about these people is that they’re friendly but only to a certain point.

They certainly know how to maintain relationships with others, but they’re also fiercely protective of their independence.

So when they meet new people, they don’t completely shy away like total recluses. But they also rarely pull new people into their circle either. 

They tend to keep others at arm’s length and really take a long time to open up and accept new people.

If you ask me (well, you’re reading this, so muhahaha, you have no choice!), this is their way of testing people out.

They’re quite choosy about who they give their limited social time to, so they want to be very sure that they select great people they can really connect with before becoming fully invested.

To many extroverts, this behavior can seem rude or disingenuous. But in actuality, it’s just their way of balancing their somewhat competing values.

People who love both solitude and their friendships

There are people who are all about friends and would never dream of spending any time alone if they can help it. Then there are people out there who really have no time for others.

But somewhere in the middle are those who like a little of both. 

People who love solitude but also maintain strong friendships usually have most of the six traits we’ve looked at. They’re interesting people who manage to strike just the right balance between socializing and alone time.

Hey, if it makes them happy, then this is exactly what they need, right?

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