As the baby boomers discover empty nesting delights, they may be surprised that amid all the changes, silence begins to reappear in their lives – if allowed. Silence is not always a welcome guest. If unfamiliar, silence can be overwhelming, disturbing, even scary. Where noise once filled the mind, the lack of it causes one to “think” about realities of daily life that may be discomforting- it can seem more like an enemy than a friend.
Silence can be mistaken for loneliness and too often it is discarded and exchanged for sports, television, music, computer games or other activities used as fill. If your silence is not golden, it may be time to look for support in learning to manage and understand it.
Before we can attain a quieter lifestyle, we may need to see silence in a more meaningful way. We may need to understand what is provoking “fill” behaviour when we bypass silence rather than embrace it.
Silence can be partnered with pondering, meditating and listening, real growth catalysts. Silence is related to love and tied to true respect and care for others and ourselves if we can learn to silence our minds and listen when others speak.
The silent act of listening is a skill we may believe we possess until we merely have disciplined ourselves to be quiet while others speak. An indicator of this false silence is seen if we jump into a conversation and spill out or thoughts like essential bits to the whole. “To listen” is an action verb. It includes hearing what another has said, attending to and valuing their words.
Exciting communication takes place when the response to another’s words is our silence.. Silence can demonstrate reverence for someone else’s wisdom and insight. Pondering, in partnership with silent listening, can open a door to knowledge or wisdom. Meditating upon a conversation can actually change our lives. Implementing more silence in our lives can be like enjoying a fine wine. Each silent experience may allow us to savour the words of another, or come to treasure a life lesson.
Silence also feeds us when we simply seek it out in natures world around us. Leaving the company of others and seeking solitude can bring refreshment, perspective, and clarity. We can learn more about ourselves and examine what should be given priority in our lives. Without the traffic of unnecessary sound, it is easier to see, to understand, to learn life’s lessons and to then find the confidence to act.
Make time for silence in your life. Give silence a place in each day. Celebrate the fact that silence is a piece of your ultimate being. Its subtle, intricate role in your life will bring moments of celebration and joy.