Every morning after I wake, I spend time doing some yoga and stretching. I usually do this in silence, but lately I have left my radio on. It is tuned to a sports radio station, which means that the silence is now filled with a constant noise about nothing that is truly important in life.
After a few days of this, I have just one thing to say, “Oh my God! Will you shut up already?!!” That constant yammering is annoying. I can’t hear myself think. Or breathe. Or be.
As long as that radio is playing in the background, my mind, soul and brain is busy listening to the broadcast and thinking about what is being said. It blocks everything else out . . . which I think is the purpose. For some reason, I probably don’t want to be with my silence or hear what my thoughts are. In a nutshell, I am in avoidance, with a desire to be distracted.
As usual, this got me thinking. This is bigger than just listening to the radio in the morning. What else is playing in the background of my life’s soundtrack, distracting me from my more important thoughts and feelings?
In thinking further about this, I realize this is exactly what has occurred in most everyone’s life today. We have all become so busy and distracted that we can no longer hear the answers we yearn for that lie just below the surface noise. Smart phones, iPads, texts, emails, phone calls, Facebook messages, YouTube, TV, tweets and more have created a society of distraction leaving us little or no time to hear the answers we seek in life . . . let alone understand the questions we are truly asking.
What would happen if you allowed yourself to sit with silence for just one day? What do you think you would hear? What answers would you suddenly realize? What questions would you ask? What clarity would suddenly find you? What peace might you find in your life?
I am pretty sure these are all gifts that lie in silence . . . if only we had the courage and discipline to give silence a chance.
Yes, the world is rapidly moving toward a culture of distraction and disruption, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t value in what once was. Some may think this is resisting the inevitable future. I think of it more as holding on to the wisdom of the past.
In the silence, I rediscover who I am.
- J. Francis
I am continually amazed by the number of people who seek out others to tell them the answers they already know. We know so much more than we give ourselves credit for. I think the real problem is that we just don’t listen closely enough to what we know and feel in our hearts.
The challenge is that the answers we seek in life lie in silence, for that is the only place we can hear their whispers. Which leaves just one question —
Do you have the courage to unplug and listen?
Welcome to the Culture of Distraction. This video beautifully demonstrates how smartphones have intruded into our lives and taken us away from being present.