How To Be More Mindful When Your Mind’s Full?: The Solace In Silence
Be mindful, you don’t always need to fill the void, finding solace in silence can be a worth wild experience.
I’ve always loved the sound of nothing. Most times I can’t get to actually enjoy silence like I’d want to so instead I puncture it with loud music to drown out everything else. I find solace in silence, not only to be pensive but for simple peace of mind. There is so much noise pollution that is inescapable and I often find myself feeling lost as my thoughts try to match or outdo everything I hear around me.
Unfortunately, there’s sometimes a feeling of missing out or being misunderstood by people who see my desire for silence as desperation for isolation. There’s so much I’ve realized I can get done when I take a moment to get rid of the noise. I’ve also become more protective of what and how I contribute to what other people hear.
With that, I sometimes wonder what’s other people’s fascination with noise (not only referring to rambunctious sounds). A ringtone, the loud tapping on a keyboard, the raised volume on a sports game – what is the appeal? In a digital age when we have most of our interactions online, do we now crave extra sounds to fill the space around us for fear of looking/feeling alone? I think, without realizing it, we avoid being silent in a conscious way. We, including myself, sometimes look for the noise even when we have the opportunity to get away from it.
Is Silence A Luxury?
Every time I imagine someone getting a moment of "peace and quiet", I always imagine them saying, "Finally!" with a heavy sigh. We also perceive silence as an escape - from our routines, from chaos - a general de-stressing activity. That makes me wonder why silence isn't A PART of our routines. Why isn't it already incorporated in as many things as possible? Do we only get to appreciate the privilege of silence after being burnt out?
One thing that has been debated and, with some research considered proven, is that the brain cannot completely multitask. It can switch between activities quickly and follow a fast rhythm of movement, especially if one of the activities is a habit, but all in all, it isn't definitive that people can multitask. Why then do we think we can coexist with noise?
When there is noise, I can barely hear what I'm thinking. It's even gotten to a point where I crave silence even when I'm in another's company; often finding myself unintentionally tuning people out for huge chunks of time, just to finish all the broken thoughts that got neglected because of distractions. Maybe silence is a luxury that we can afford but we’ve made it overpriced.
How To Be More Mindful When Your Mind's Full?
Being self-aware is very important to me. I like to think that we should pride ourselves on ensuring we can not only recognize ourselves at the end of the day but also be able to strive to be better versions of ourselves. Being mindful is not only for meditation and enlightenment; it is also for practicing self-compassion. Through all the noise, how often do you check on yourself? You are at the mercy of external noise on a regular basis, with almost no way of enjoying life to its fullest. Take, and create, more moments for yourself. Don't demonize "quiet" because it's the perfect time for you to check up on yourself. Relish in the wonders of staying still, quiet, in our own thoughts, and embracing the joy of listening to no one else. Give yourself freedom from all the noise. Allow yourself to feel delighted wherever silence takes you.
I want to encourage you, and myself, to try to enjoy silence whenever possible. I believe there are many benefits to reap when being mindful of that.
What Are The Benefits Of Being Silent?
- Fuelling your creativity – When you allow yourself to explore your thoughts, you'll be more easily inspired. Solutions to current or long-standing problems may suddenly occur to you, or a workaround or innovative approach may seem more feasible.
- Awareness of self and environment – Once you’re comfortable in your silence, you’ll notice a distinct shift in your ability to be more self-aware. Also, you can better appreciate the world around you, including your immediate environment.
- Reflection – Silence permits the kind of reflection that can go beyond mere introspection. After meditating in silence, you may be more motivated to mend significant relationships that have become strained, focus on self-improvement, and allow yourself to be challenged in positive ways.
There's always been more to silence than we think. It hasn't been obvious because we've villainized it. We've given it negative connotations of loneliness, isolation, and the illusion that we'll be missing out on all the things around us. I think we too often associate silence with loneliness, but a void filled with noise is still empty. I believe silence is recuperation.
I can admit that it could seem deafening if you're purposely trying to tune out the noise inside your own head, but what happens when you're suddenly forced into silence? How will you face those thoughts then? I think when you choose silence, as it helps you to be more mindful, you'll get a better sense of what is around you and how you impact each other.
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