August 2, 2018

Quiet. For just a moment. What do you hear? Do you feel uncomfortable?

Silence is a wonderful thing often overlooked in the rush of our daily lives. We are surrounded by noise, music, chatter, and alerts. And sometimes we really do need to stop and enjoy the silence.

How do we do that when we are so used to the noise around us? We must be intentional. My young son loves to share by talking and chattering—nonstop at times. Our goal recently has been to simply be okay in silence, and he is making great progress—with the occasional reminder.

It is within the silence that we can really relax, dream, adapt, become renewed, and be aware of the simple things that surround us. Those things we never paid attention to before. Sometimes the silence means we must be a little uncomfortable or pay attention to our own feelings. This can create internal struggles as we try to figure out life or find the next steps in the process.

So how can you learn to be silent?

First turn off your device, your television, your music, and just be in silence. It may feel weird at first. We get so used to the background noise surrounding us. If you can’t handle a large moment of silence, that’s okay. Start out with just a few minutes. Sit in silence in the car for a few extra minutes instead of rushing into your house. Sit in silence with your cup of coffee in the morning instead of reaching for the television remote.

Know it is okay to be silent with another person although it’s not always easy. Silence can seem uncomfortable, but chatter isn’t always needed. Sometimes you simply need to sit in silence with someone else. Follow the flow of conversation and if there is a lull, let the lull exist a bit longer. If you need silence in the conversation, then be the one to prompt it. Let the conversation dwindle.

Look at those around you, enjoy the nature surrounding you, or simply sit back, close your eyes and relax in the moment. The conversation may start back up or it may continue in silence. And that’s okay. Take the time to process your thoughts before responding when the conversation starts back up. Sometimes just being near a person is enough when spoken words aren’t really needed at that moment.

Even by starting small you can learn to appreciate the silence in those moments of your life. And realize how important that silence is to becoming a better you.