Practicing silence “sounds” difficult but results are worth it. Have you ever known someone who, when they speak, people listen? Such people speak only when necessary, and their thoughts are well-measured.
Steps to Silence
1) Begin by speaking only when it’s absolutely essential.
You’ll quickly realize that much conversation consists of blurting out random thoughts and opinions.
2) Choose one or two hours during the evening or weekend to be in silence.
You can be active, but forgo talking, singing, listening to music, watching a movie, smart phone, text messaging, using the computer, and other interactive media. Some activities don’t require talk, but they still include listening to other people’s opinions and emoting. Read, take a walk, catch up with a hobby, wash the dishes, run a load of laundry or another activity that doesn’t require mental distractions.
3) Intentionally focus on natural sounds.
Without artificial input, you can hear wind blowing through tree branches, spring songbirds, a distant train whistle, squirrels chattering, spiders drumming – they do, but I just threw that in to be sure you are paying attention 🙂 These sounds are soothing and healing, but seldom noticed.
4) Make it fun. Invite family and friends to participate.
Try going to dinner with friends or colleagues who all agree to not talk. Results will be hilarious and challenging for your server, but insightful. When walking or hiking with friends, people often chat constantly, missing a majestic sky, delightful wildflowers, and critters scurrying out of their path.
5) Talk is necessary, and music is delightful, but they can be distracting.
Consistent practice of silence opens the mind to new insights. It’s possible that long suppressed emotions surface because typical outer distractions no longer hold them back. This is good! Suppressed emotions need processing so that they don’t cause long-term distress and dis-ease.
6) The practice of silence improves meditation.
As you practice silence, your mind learns to control ceaseless chatter. The mind’s natural tendency to express thoughts begins to subside, making meditation easier.
With continued practice of silence, and daily meditation, you can find peace and composure amid the noise and haste of life.
Take life into your own hands and make it happen. It’s your life; lead it.
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