8. The Sound of Silence
Today I want to introduce you to something we do not often make time do – sit in silence.
Silence is a great way for us to ground and settle; often we find ourselves sat in some form of silence, but invariably it is not intentional, and it is not silent. We may be reading, busy with work, house-hold chores, mentally working through problems – but it is not purposeful, aware silence – the sort that invites curious awareness of the present moment.
So, today, silence is your aim. Just for a few minutes.
You can consider tuning into the emotional landscape you are in, or to notice and allow for the whirling thoughts without judgement – allowing them to pass like scudding clouds. Or simply to tune into our physical bodies and notice what is going on for you – those Joe Wicks high kicks that have given you thigh pain from hell, or the raised tight shoulders from worry. Or simply to hold a space for whatever pops up and allow for the experience to be exactly as it is.
"don't try to steer the leaf on the wind, simply allow it to float according to the breeze"
Set intentions for your practice:
Apply non-judgement – not just to what is happening but to the relationship you might have with what is present – for example noticing thoughts – the inner dialogue might be "argh my mind is so busy, why isn't this working, I haven't time for this"…" instead try "my mind is busy, and that's okay"
Trust – in yourself, and the process; you may notice irritations, resistance, mind-wandering etc…simply trust that it is exactly as it should be
Kindness – the world is unhinged enough right now, so how supportive is your inner dialogue? If it's heavy on the 'should'….; 'should have done this, shouldn't do that, should try harder, shouldn't be this hard' how about kindness – what's the worst that could happen! In fact, research shows us that when we practice kindness toward ourselves, we are better able to extend kindness towards others.
I've attached a silent recording – punctuated at the start and finish with a bell to help support your practice. (weirdest thing I have done, record silence…!)
Reflect in your journal – what is it like to sit in stillness like that? How do you feel after the practice?