ongoing projects

Below is a few projects that I am working on. Please feel free contact me for further information via email <>

Solitude. The main focus of my research focuses on the effect of solitude on daily experiences and the benefit of taking time for solitude on psychological and relational well-being. I am also currently exploring different factors that affect people’s solitary experience. Those projects are made possible with support from many mentors, including Edward Deci, Ph.D.; Richard Ryan, Ph.D.; Bart Soenens, Ph.D.Netta Weinstein, Ph.D.; Andrew Przybylski, Ph.D.

If we feel forced into being alone, will we be more likely to find something to do, no matter how dull and boring, when we spend time in solitude? In a set of three studies, we looked at how different levels of autonomy that people experienced going into solitude affect the likelihood of them engaging in a diversion to escape from solitary thinking.

If we embrace our time alone, will it cure our loneliness? We collected data from first-year students and asked them how about their experiences in college, then we asked them about their motivation for spending time alone with themselves. We found an interaction between students’ perception of belonging in their peer groups and their motivation for being alone.

Can solitude be authentic? When we hear the word “authentic”, we often think of a social situation in which we either feel like ourselves, act accordingly with our values and beliefs. The question we ask for this project is whether such experience can be felt in solitude.

Is there such a thing as shared solitude? We thought this could be a fun topic to explore. Silence can be a way for us to spend time with ourselves in the presence of another person. Those moments can be great or they can be uncomfortable. The question then is whether those moments play a part in our relationships.

Does the emergence of new technologies disrupt the time we can have with ourselves? This question comes up a lot when we define solitude; that is, whether solitary screen time is considered solitude. This creates a new opportunity for us to look into this question and compare experiences in solitude when people use their devices and when they do not.

Is there cross-cultural difference in how solitude is experienced? This project is in collaboration with Aishwarya Iyer and her research team at Acharya Institutes. In this project, we will use qualitative methods to explore different themes that might emerge when people in India talk about solitude and compare those themes with what might emerge in American samples.




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