“When was the last time you sat still, alone, in silence?Kate Lister
No books, magazines etc.
Not even a guided meditation app or whatever.
Just you and your thoughts and your emotions and your physical sensations and your processes and your FUUUCK THIS IS WEIRD AND SCARY AND WHAT ARE ALL THESE THINGS IN MY HEAD AND WHAT IS LIFE AND WHAT AM I DOING AND WHO AM I AND WHY DON’T THEY LOVE ME AND WHY IS MY LEFT HAND TINGLING I’M DYING!!!!
Silence actually is golden.
This is what I’m pushing this month.
Getting comfy with ourselves.
There’s little else that will help us more, I’m sure of it.”
I read the quote above in an Instagram caption written by Kate Lister and it hit me so hard! I just had to share it. If you are the kind of person who always needs noise to feel comfortable, read on.
Although I’m not really one for TV, I used to depend on background noise to fill every moment of silence. I would play music whether I was commuting to classes or clients, cooking, cleaning, reading, or sleeping. I am a huge fan of music and, as a complete empath, my mood is always set by whatever is playing through my headphones. However, my reluctance to sit with silence was getting too much. I was at the stage where I couldn’t sleep without playing some tunes. Meditation wouldn’t happen without the help of an app. I couldn’t be on my own without a podcast or favourite band playing in the background. And don’t get me started on my phone usage.
I hadn’t really registered my aversion to silence until fairly recently, but now I can see it for what it is. Fear of the THIS IS WEIRD AND SCARY AND WHAT ARE ALL THESE THINGS IN MY HEAD was stopping me from being still. Stopping me from being quiet.
I had some news recently which really shook me to the core. And, while I went through every emotion under the sun in response to this news, I could hear the same internal message being repeated underneath it all.
I need quiet. Silence is healing.
I am now falling in love with silence more and more every day.
Taking time out to stop DOING and start BEING is so therapeutic. Add silence to the mix and you have a pretty powerful healing practice.
This weekend I was away up north near Pitlochry, and experienced what I’m sure will be one of my most powerful memories. Sitting in our private hot tub, with the snow falling all around us, and no noise save for the birds in the sky above. (And Mike saw a red squirrel but I took too long getting ready and missed it wahh!)
When we are quiet we are able to experience the present moment. No TV, no phones, no music, no distractions. It is in silence that we are our most mindful. The quiet anchors us into the now, so that we fully experience what is going on around us. Life.
Silence also helps us understand what is going on internally. We will never fully heal if we spend all of our time distracting ourselves away from our thoughts, our suffering and our fears.
My task for you guys – and myself – is to explore this silence.
The pause where the body is neither breathing in nor out.
Silence is healing, and it is all around us, waiting for us to pay attention.