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The Sounds of Silence

“I’ve begun to realize that you can listen to silence and learn from it. It has a quality and a dimension all its own.” ― Chaim Potok

Silence is becoming more and more rare in our modern age. Our T.V.’s, phones, computers, tablets, and appliances provide constant noise. We feel social pressure to fill silence with speech.

I admit that from the moment I wake up and throughout my day, I feel compelled to listen to a podcast, particularly while doing household tasks or get ready for the day. I am trying to become more mindful of this impulse, and to spend more time in silence, or listening to the sounds organically in my environment without adding to them.

What are we avoiding with all this noise? What are we missing out on, that could be accessed through silence?

Well, it may be different for every person. And there’s one easy way to find out – to spend more time in silence! But for skeptics, here are some of the things we could be gaining from spending more time in silence…

  • Self-reflection and self-awareness
  • Creativity
  • Appreciation and gratitude for what is right in front of us
  • Attendance to emotional and physical pain (which, though hard to sit through in the moment, is more effective at moving us through the pain, as opposed to continuing to avoid)
  • Giving our minds a break from overstimulation

If you’re curious about the impact of silence, try it right now. Turn off all music, T.V., podcasts, and other auditory distractions within your control. Take in what you can still here within the silence. The buzzing of the fridge? The ticking of the old radiator? Dogs barking? Traffic noise? Are there pauses in these noises, when it really does sound silent? Can you hear the absence of voices and music? Is your mind busy, or peaceful? No right or wrong, just notice, just for a moment.

I wish you all a Mindful Monday.

-Rebecca

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