“Do not die of another person’s misery.” -Baltasar Gracián
“Here one may ask. . .why it is so desirable that a man should be individuated. Not only is it desirable, it is absolutely indispensable because, through his contamination with others, he falls into situations and commits actions which bring him into disharmony with himself . . .[and] acts in a way contrary to [his] own nature. Accordingly a man can neither be at one with himself nor accept responsibility for himself. He feels himself to be in a degrading, unfree, unethical condition. But the disharmony with himself is precisely the neurotic and intolerable condition from which he seeks to be delivered, and deliverance from this condition will come only when he can be and act as he feels is conformable with his true self.”
Carl Jung- Two Essays in Analytical Psychology
“The capacity to be alone is a valuable resource when changes of mental attitude are required. After major alterations in circumstances, fundamental reappraisal of the significance and meaning of existence may be needed. In a culture in which interpersonal relationships are generally considered to provide the answer to every form of distress, it is sometimes difficult to persuade well-meaning helpers that solitude can be as therapeutic as emotional support.
Suppose that I become dissatisfied with my habitual self, or feel that there are areas of experience or self-understanding which I cannot reach. One way of exploring these is to remove myself from present surroundings and see what emerges. This is not without its dangers. Any form of new organization or integration within the mind has to be preceded by some degree of disorganization. No one can tell, until he has experienced it, whether or not this necessary disruption of former patterns will be succeeded by something better.
I am less convinced that intimate personal relationships are the only source of health and happiness. In the present climate, there is a danger that love is being idealized as the only path to salvation. When Freud was asked what constituted psychological health, he gave as his answer the ability to love and work. We have over-emphasized the former, and paid too little attention to the latter. . .exclusive concentration upon interpersonal relationships has led to failure to consider other ways of finding personal fulfillment . . .”
Anthony Storr- Solitude: A Return to the Self