With the constant chatter of email, cell phones, Facebook, Twitter, co-workers, spouses and children grabbing our attention and demanding our immediate response, it is no wonder we sometimes feel overwhelmed and over-stimulated. While the thought of turning off your cell phone or shutting down your computer might be terrifying, the benefits of periods of silence can be tremendous. You can reduce stress, feel more rested, and enjoy your life more!
There was a time my mind was feeling noisy and busy. Everything seemed loud and I was needing a break. I asked my husband to support me in a day of silence on the coming Saturday. He decided to participate as well and we ended up spending the entire weekend in silence. There were definitely times when it felt difficult and maybe a moment (or two) when I thought I might explode, but even after just a few hours my mind went from a ‘full boil’ to a ‘low simmer’.
What I found most interesting was my increased awareness of the importance (or lack) of conveying any given thought. Do I break into a sweat gesturing wildly and making bizarre facial expression to express “Isn’t it a beautiful day today? It’s so much warmer than yesterday. I’m so excited spring is here!” without using words? Or do I sit quietly, smile, and just enjoy the beautiful day? I found that choosing the latter helped me to stay in the moment. I found it to be a similar experience to choosing to leave the camera at home for a drive up through the mountains. Do I spend my time looking through the tiny ‘lens’ of my mind? Or do I just relax and take it all in?
So, if you’re interested in experiencing any of the following, you might try a little silence. Even if only for an hour or two, you might be surprised how refreshing it can be.
- Quiet your mind
- Relax and refresh
- Re-prioritize your thoughts
- Alleviate stress and reduce anxiety
- Feel more in control of your emotions
- Find an inner oasis of peace and tranquility