Although much of the discussion about how we are spending our time in the digital age revolves around how we can harness technology to get closer to friends and loved ones, comparatively less focus has been placed on how technology is enabling us to spend time alone.


While this might sound like a strange topic to discuss and advocate for, there is a rationale behind it. In fact, studies are increasingly arguing that the digital revolution has made us too well connected and left us with too little time on our own. Although conventional wisdom might suggest that the more time we spend in the company of friends – whether online or off – the better, there are equally compelling reasons to carve out some alone time for yourself. Indeed, a leading psychology publication has recently argued that spending time alone can have a powerful impact on your mental health and more generally, your life.

But what are some of the ways in which individuals are spending time alone these days?


Entertaining yourself online: immersion is the key

Spending time alone isn’t necessarily something that has to be done in complete isolation and with no external stimuli. In fact, finding ways to immerse yourself in a virtual world and to escape from the real world can have a number of benefits. 

Online games have always been a popular way of doing this, and provide a perfect form of escapism from all the stresses of our daily life. Igaming is a popular way of carving out some alone time, and provide high levels of immersion, given the amount of concentration and focus required to play them successfully. Sustaining your attention for extended periods of time in this way brings much of the benefits of spending time alone, and it is this present moment awareness that online games can provide. 


Honing your skills: online education and the digital age 

If you are looking for more productive ways to spend your time alone online, it could well be worth investigating how you could take part in an online course. With many online educational providers offering courses of all skill and experience levels bursting onto the scene these days, it is safe to say that the digital revolution has well and truly arrived. This is in addition to the many fully fledged colleges offering online degree programs. 

With that said, now is the perfect time to get started with an online course that will help you switch careers, improve your skills or just make you a more well-rounded person. This has the added benefit of allowing you to not only spend some dedicated time alone but to do so in a way that is productive in the long run.


Reading in the digital age

One of the most popular ways of spending time alone is reading. Ever since the printing press revolutionized society in the 1500s, reading has been one of the go-to hobbies for people of all ages and all sectors of society. Whether it is a complex engineering book or an epic work of literature, there are few things in life that provide the level of immersion that a good book does. Reading is the perfect way to spend some alone time as it fully immerses you in that particular activity, thereby eliminating the lingering stresses of the real world. 

Despite the many advances in technology that have emerged since printed books first started to circulate, there are few pastimes that have proved so lastingly popular. In the digital age, reading is becoming popular with a new generation of digital natives, and devices such as ebook readers, tablets and even mobile phones are now where a high percentage of us do the majority of our reading. 

Ebook apps on mobile phones have become a very popular way of keeping on top of a reading list, as you have your phone constantly by your side over the course of the day. This means that whenever you have a few minutes to yourself, you can pick up where you left off and dive right back into your favorite literary world. For this reason, books have become an important way of spending our time alone in this digital age.