"It's been a crazy-busy summer.""We've been playing catch-up all quarter.""I'm meeting myself coming and going. I was texting my boss last night at midnight.""All I've been doing is sitting in meetings. My email box is overflowing. I owe everybody something.""I saw your Facebook post. Did you read my comment'"Such is our typical hyper-connected world where we're plugged in 24/7--often to people we've never met face to face, serving customers products that we've never seen from start to finish, produced and delivered by people we don't even like.Yet it often surprises me to hear some people say, "I hate to eat alone." Or, "I never go shopping by myself." Why not' A primary way to get in touch with your real passion and purpose in life is to enjoy your own company.In fact, the strength of your leadership and personal influence stems from the intensity of your thinking during moments of solitude.Learn to welcome solitude as the primary avenue toward personal growth. Solitude allows you opportunity to think deep thoughts that affect your character, your relationships, and your career. To think about where you've beenTo identify new passions stirred within you during a new stage in lifeTo reconfirm where you're goingTo plan your path toward new or former goalsTo reflect on why you feel so strongly about certain issuesTo consider how different your values are from those of other people you knowTo consider what all people have in commonTo question yourself about why you cling to bad habits and energy drainersTo gather courage to put aside behaviors, attitudes, and habits that hold you backTo praise yourself for your strengthsTo challenge yourself to follow your dreamsReflection and solitude nourish the soul. They re-energize you for difficult tasks--physical work or emotionally draining work such as being a caregiver for a loved one or dealing with a relationship or work crisis. They add space for creativity and innovation. They add joy and gratitude to your life.The value of our life lies not in the length of our days--but in the strength of our solitude. -- This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website. Click here to read full news..