In this age of social media and 24-hour news cycles, silence is an antiquated idea. Most of us need background noise or busy work to combat the “dead air” of our lives, while others allow their minds to race with a million thoughts. The notion of sitting in silence for just a few moments seems impossible for some. However, surrendering ourselves to silence can be one of the greatest actions we take toward living a peaceful, healthful existence.
There have been times that I would spend an entire day in my house thinking about everything and absolutely nothing. During a particular time, I would often reflect on past arguments with a loved one, rehashing what I should have said or done during our last interaction. I then fall into this frantic panic, as I drown in my own overly cautious fears and outlandish scenarios. As a self-described ruminator, I know that this type of worry and strife can lead to exaggerated emotions and stress, making myself angry over situations that have already occurred and those that have not yet happened.
Often times, we miss out on what’s going on at the moment or dismiss great opportunities because our thoughts have spiraled us into such a pessimistic place. We end up defeated before we even take a step toward anything that can make us grow. Over-thinkers—such as myself—could benefit from the absence of noise. The act of being completely still helps to ease thoughts, shuts down fears and allows individuals to embrace the present for what it is.
And not only can we mentally benefit from silence; there are also a few physical perks that act of stillness can promote. Studies have shown that just five minutes of silence a day can help reduce stress and anxiety; another study has touted the benefits of meditation amongst older African Americans with atherosclerosis and other health ailments.
Silence also keeps us level headed, as it allows us to remain in the moment. When life is happening, we often get caught up with the burdens of our daily tasks and responsibilities. However, when you spend a few moments in silence, you force yourself to slow down and take in life as it comes. Silence also opens our eyes to the simplicities of life that we often take for granted. Yes, a greater desire for thankfulness can be achieved through enjoying moments of silence.
When you have finally turned down the clutter in your mind, self-realization has room to sit.
While most of us are afraid of sitting in silence for fear of what we will unveil about ourselves, we have to understand the importance of frequently resting our brains and thoughts. Silence is the most imperative natural activity you can engage into promote a positive shift in your life. Try it!