Silence is one of the most absolutely powerful things I’ve experienced in my life. So then what is it about silence that is so difficult for us to handle?
I’ve had a lot of experience with silence, yet even I have a hard time with it quite often. If I sit down, close my eyes and get quiet, it’s not long before I have the desire to jump up out of my chair to “do” something.
When I quiet myself down, thoughts come flooding into my mind. Reviewing what I did right or wrong. Planning what I’m going to do later. Realizing things I forgot to do. Perhaps hearing the “ding” of my phone, letting me know I have a new email to check.
I have to literally stop myself as thoughts are entering to say to myself, “No. You can deal with that later. For now, just relax.” And as I say that to myself, I imagine that thought as a book that I’m stacking up beside my chair. I give myself permission to let go of it for now.
I love to feel the energy in my body as I get quiet. I can literally feel physical changes in my body. My muscles relax. I feel a slight tingling throughout my body. I somehow feel much lighter. If I find it hard to start relaxing, I breath in through my mouth and out through my nose, at an increasingly slower and more shallow rate.
Even when I truly am “busy” and can’t find time, I attempt to fit in at least 10 minutes of silence. If I do it in the morning, I find myself approaching my entire day with a much more calm and grounded manner. It literally sets the tone for my day.
On the very few occasions I’m create for myself to go, I love to attend the worship service of the Quakers. At least when I’ve gone, their “service” was comprised of an hour of silence. If you think 10 minutes is a challenge to remain silent, try an hour!
Though it’s “just” an hour out of my day, it’s one of the most healing experiences I can give myself. The effects are profound and long-lasting.
I encourage you to at least give silence a try. Do it now. Why wait? Just shut your computer and phone off. The world won’t end in 10 minutes. Get yourself in a place without distractions and give yourself this gift of silence.
We have a lot going on in our lives. Too much, really. See what silence might do to help keep things in balance!