Hey there! How’s your week going?
A recent blog by Leo of Zen Habits gave me pause for thought. It was all about creating space for quiet time in our day. As I read Leo’s comments about rushing, filling every spare moment with social engagements and noise I found myself nodding.
He spoke about some of the changes he had made in his life to incorporate a bit more quiet and how it gave him space to process thoughts and ideas, helped him be more conscious and more energy when with others, the space to be selective and reflective. It sounded good. I felt calmer just reading about his morning tea ritual and imagining myself doing similar.
He listed simple things to try:
- Create a little quiet space in the morning.
- Meditate for 2 minutes a day (to start with). Just sit and put your attention on your breath, returning when your thoughts distract you.
- When you feel the urge to socialize online, pause. Give yourself a little quiet instead.
- When you feel the automatic urge to say Yes to an invitation, consider saying No instead, unless it’s something that will truly enrich your life.
- Don’t take music on a run or walk. Instead, give yourself space with your thoughts.
- When someone talks to you, instead of jumping in with something about yourself, just listen. Absorb. Reflect their thoughts back to them. Appreciate their beauty.
- Make time for the people closest to you. One-on-one time is best. Really pay attention to them.
- Make time for creating, with no distractions.
- Spend some time decluttering, and creating peaceful space.
- Create space between your automatic reaction, and your actions (or words). Even one second is enough. In that space, consider whether your reaction is appropriate.
- Instead of rushing, take a breath, and slow down.
- Pay attention to sensations of whatever you’re eating, drinking, doing.
- Have a daily time for reflection.
Of course its not about doing them all or banning all noise, I love a good tune, a bit of banter but there is some space in the daily chaos for a bit more zen or at least pausing before operating on autopilot.
So I’ve been pausing a little more before I automatically go to turn on the stereo or whip out my phone. I’ve enjoyed eating breakfast without my normal news in the background. And it has made me feel calmer. Next up is a bit more listening, and a bit less rushing. And pausing from time to time.
What do you think about quiet time?