Even if as an introvert I enjoy solitude, I too know that sometimes loneliness can start feeling a bit painful. That's why I'm putting together this guide for us all, though written with a focus on extroverts in particular, as I can imagine they are going through rough times because of the new reality the Coronavirus quarantine imposed on the world.

You are here

First thing you should do is understand what's happening to you now. In simple terms, I see it as a transition from being a participant to an observer. When you observe more, you become more sensitive. And surviving when you're strong is different then when you're more sensitive. You have to learn to adapt to this new reality, further than just moving your social interactions online and keeping busy.

Embrace the change

No general would go to war without mastering military strategies, so if you want to win this fight with solitude and changing times you also have to prepare yourself by learning from the masters of sensitivity: poets. This is what Rainer Maria Rilke, one of the greatest poets of the world, said about change:

Want the change. Be inspired by the flame
where everything shines as it disappears.
The artist, when sketching, loves nothing so much
as the curve of the body as it turns away.

What locks itself in sameness has congealed.[...]
What turns hard becomes rigid
and is easily shattered.

Pour yourself like a fountain.
Flow into the knowledge that what you are seeking
finishes often at the start, and, with ending, begins.

Every happiness is the child of a separation
it did not think it could survive.

― Sonnets To Orpheus, Part Two, XII

And this is what he said about solitude:

Love your solitude and try to sing out with the pain it causes you.
― Letters to a Young Poet

Which takes us on to the next step:


So we're mentally prepared for changes, solitude, and we're ready to plan for things that will help you get through this. So let's talk options, with the mind-set of expecting the best, but preparing for the worst.

In a best case scenario, we're just a couple of weeks away from everything going back to normal. But we can also expect this situation to last for a couple of months. That's why I would make a daily to do list, a short term plan, but also a 3-4 months plan with things I can do to give this time meaning.

I love online marketing so in the short term, besides my normal work from home job, I am thinking of creating some videos and building some new websites, while 3-4 months is enough for doing SEO, to get them in the first position on Google.

Someone else might think of a professional reconversion looking at what jobs are in high demand right now. It's a great time for online courses and online consultancy. Both benefiting of the services, to master new skills, and also offering them. I am fan of creating courses, writing books and I would even like to try out my hand at making music. What would you love to create?

I am 100% sure the italian flashmob where people are singing outside their balconies was the idea of an extrovert. And it turned into something amazing that brought so much happiness. We don't sing because we are happy, we are happy because we sing. We need more extroverts to organise things online.

Practice self dependence & hedonism

Self dependence means being self sufficient, and you can practice it by making plans with yourself based on what you love doing (that's where hedonism comes in).

I for one love Agatha Christie's books & their screen and theatre adaptations. I like discovering new things and new places, and online browsing is a good option now. And you know what you like.

What you have to make sure is that when all the work is done you make time for that something you love doing. Plan happiness, search for stand up comedy shows on YouTube, put that favourite music playlist, play that online scrabble or pool game with your friends.

And don't forget about self love - something totally different from self dependence. Accept yourself, forgive yourself, trust yourself. You have yourself and you're gonna be ok.