ALL ALONE by Dr. Robert Coplan

In ALL ALONE, Coplan distills over 30 years worth of psychological research on solitude into an accessible, approachable, and endlessly applicable work of popular science.

How to Improve Your Relationship with Solitude and Find Your Personal Balance
by Dr. Robert Coplan
Simon & Schuster, early 2025
(via The Whalen Agency)

ALL ALONE works against the myth that being alone is necessarily equivalent to being lonely or being antisocial, instead it argues for an understanding of solitude as a natural, necessary, and beneficial part of a healthy human life. It is a guidebook on how to approach solitude in a healthy way and how to best strike a balance between solitude and socialization at home, in the workplace, in our romantic relationships, as parents, and at different life stages.

After years of people writing passionate essays about the assumed positive value of time alone, it is only in the last few years that researchers have actually been able to produce tangible evidence of such effects. Coplan’s research has contributed to such breakthroughs in the study of solitude including:

The (somewhat paradoxical) notion that spending time alone helps our relationships with others

A preliminary finding that spending time alone on your phone can interfere with the positive impacts of solitude

The finding that children, adolescents, and adults who report that they are not getting enough solitude) tend to report heightened stress, negative moods, and symptoms of depression

And much more …

In the end, Coplan hopes that by fostering a healthy relationship with solitude, we will come to better understand ourselves, our relationships with others, and our relationship with the world around us.

As a developmental psychologist with over 30 years of experience, Dr. Robert Coplan is a well-established expert in the study of solitude. He has participated in interviews with The New York Times, The Atlantic, NPR, Vox, Psychology Today, WebMd, and VICE among others and has co-authored five books and hundreds of academic articles on topics ranging from childhood shyness to solitude in adulthood to social withdrawal.

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