The Sound of Silence | Deafening or Enlightening?
How many of you are able to sit and just be present with your own mind? Does the thought of this make you uncomfortable? It did me too for a long time!
I was always on the go. If I wasn't doing something outside of my house, I was finding things that needed to be cleaned or projects that "needed" to be done. I didn't know at the time that I was, subconsciously, avoiding the overwhelming thoughts that come with silence and stillness.
I didn't want to have to deal with all of the things my inner voice was trying to bring up for me to pay attention to. I didn't want to sit with my shadows and listen to what they were trying to teach me. I was, instead, happy (I use that word very sarcastically) to overwork myself and live in a constant state of searching for perfection and outside validation. I mean, let's be honest, if it looks shiny and new, happy and confident on the outside no one questions it's history right?
It wasn't until I took my first personal development class where we had to meditate that I found out I had a problem with the sound of silence. When I tried to quiet my mind for the first time it was deafening. All of these thoughts raced in and I could hardly keep track of what was coming at me. Years of pent up emotions, personal beliefs, negative self-talk along with the laundry list of to-do's that I always kept for myself. Meditate. Ha! More like sit and pretend. It was like everything else in my life...looked right on the outside but inside it was a mess! But then, we had to share. OH LORD!!! I am a teacher by trade. I feel the need to participate when asked, because, well, I'm a rule follower and people pleaser. How was I going to share about all the bullshit in my head. I wasn't able to quiet my mind for 10 seconds! When other people started to share, I knew I had found my saving grace. I wasn't alone. Ninety percent of the people in my course were just like me!
One class led to another, which led to another and another. I now was so wound up in learning about my "shadows" and how to heal all of the things I perceived to be wrong with myself that I went from completely ignoring them and experiencing that deafening silence to feeling completely enlightened, empowered and I slowly learned to love to sit with in silence.
Being in that safe place, where someone held space for me to work through my past, learn about things that sparked my interest and just feel supported was a game changer for my life. I went from feeling angry, restless, alone (in a house full of people, might I add), constantly seeking approval, exhausted mentally and emotionally and just utterly defeated to feeling a sense of liberation, in every aspect of that word! There was this complete sense of freedom to know how to release things that no longer served me. I found my inner voice and learned how to tune in to me instead of looking for that approval or validation from others. I learned how to cut cords, energetically, with people who were, spiritually, weighing me down. I learned how to recognize things that triggered me and how to heal the underlying emotions and situations that caused me to be triggered in the first place. I learned how to prioritize myself without the feelings of guilt. I have found how to choose the people and things that bring me the most joy and only expel my energy in a way that also still fills me up.
I have found a passion that brings me peace and joy. To some, it makes me seem like I have fallen off the deep end. But you know what? Those aren't my people. Yet another thing this inner work has taught me. The people who love you, for the true, authentic, YOU that you are, will love you no matter what you throw their way.
I no longer love being "busy". I'd choose to sit in silence over a crowded space any day! My never-ending "to-do" list seems to fall a little more to the sidelines these days. I've learned that the sound of silence is beautiful and I crave it often.