Hello out there!
This week, Jess asked, in her Outsider newsletter, what the word solitude makes you think of. Of course, many tend to conjure up images of remote locations cut off from society in some way. To some this is appealing and to some, it is just not.
I agreed with the article's overarching point that solitude is a vital element of anyone's life. And, furthermore, a vital part of the creative process. There's no doubt that the tendency (ability) to embrace solitude has waned in the Western World. Well, Outsider had some tips this week on how to redefine your aloneness:
1. 📶Unlearn Hyper-Connected Culture – It has been sold to us that being "alone" sucks and "the more connectivity, the better". Not true. Aren't we all bored of Zuckerberg spewing on about his "social mission – to make the world more open and connected". Yawn, we know you made a distraction machine. Get familiar with the idea that more connectivity is not better than less. Adjust to the weight that reflection has over communication and prioritise it.
"all of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.”
- Blaise Pascal, Philosopher
2. 📅Make A Plan – We need to structure our solitude since it won't happen by mistake. Designate times of day and moments in the week to embark on solitudinous ventures.
3. 🚶Walk Walk Walk – Taking walks is one of the highest quality forms of solitude. No music, no podcasts. Just you, a pen, and paper. (It helps to expand your idea of walkable weather too. Cold days, wet days, all can be enjoyably walkable.)
4. ✍️Thinking By Writing – An exquisite mechanism to generate solitude. Deconstruct problems, organise thought, offer kindness to emotion, think expansively. Just as we are all creative, we are all writers. This may not be your usual go-to medium but when you visit it, the awaiting solitude will show you the way.
5. 🏠Leave Your Phone At Home – Duh. Perhaps obvious but not having your phone on you removes the risk of temptation. Plan evenings without it, make it a joint venture with friends and discuss meeting points and the fact you won't have phones, to reassure it will be okay. Even leaving the house with your phone buried in your bag can be a simple deterrent to the automatic use of it. (The more you do this the more you'll find that feeling of urgency to have our phone on us all the time is overemphasised)
6. 🔎Find Your Formula: – Solitude & Companionship. Every person has their own ideal blend of these two. You will soon discover yours and own it. Start exploring! For every hour you spend with others, how many hours do you need alone?
I hope this issue inspires you 1, to sign up for Outsider & 2, to find some regular alone time if you don't already. For me, I find this on the bike. Or walks after lunch. The phrase "I'm not anti-social, I'm just pro-solitude" always made me laugh a bit but nowadays, I take it more seriously ; )
Thank you for reading!
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📷: Hagbard Celine ✨🤙🏻
paywall alert. To access the article, google: 'Cycling's next big thing: gravel | Financial Times'
This is FT, after-all, so this article is a commercial look at gravel's boom. Proud to say I built my custom gravel bike back in 2013. ; )
Bicyclists are dying on our streets.
When i say "dirt don't hurt" this isn't what I meant...
Startups, Sales & PR
"I worked 15 years for more than ten messenger companies before I realized I wanted to work for myself."
Wednesday was 10/9 #messengerappreciationday, this post by Kevin Bolger stuck out because of what an inspiration in the urban bike scene he's always been! If you ever need something delivered in NYC, hit up CycleHawk!
How do you get your first 100 signups? How do you grow your mailing list from there? What are your best tips and tricks for growth?
We have a day of workshops which on different topics concerning consistent anti-oppression coming up at Workspace 6!
I don't really know Matt but know Quoc from Quoc Pham shoes. These photos look great!
A very cool book and project by Carlton Reid.
I recently visited Freek at Klaassen Cycles for the first time and they're one of the few shops near Amsterdam, if not the only, putting out custom builds like this!
What happens when you leave home on a bike with no other plan than to ride eastwards?
Back in 2015 he took off on his bicycle from Amsterdam to Singapore, capturing the ride in stories and photography in the book “One Year on a Bike”.
Returning to a ‘normal life’ for only just a short while he set off again in summer 2017 on a new adventure to cycle the so called Hemistour from Vancouver to Ushuaia choosing the back roads through the Andes and along the Pacific coast.
He has just returned to Amsterdam and next Thursday, you can pick his brain about sleeping in the wild, crossing deserts and conquering the rain seasons of South America at Rapha Amsterdam. : )