Can’t Stand the Quiet?

Some people say they can’t stand the quiet.  There always has to be background noise, the TV or music playing. Or constantly on the computer, phone, chatting, gaming. How can one hear the logical heart with constant external stimulation? Why are we so driven to distraction?  Sometimes when I have a stretch of free time I become overwhelmed with the choices of how to best utilize it.  I think of all of these things and get frantic trying to decide. We have so many activities and choices, technology and to do lists. So many ways to divide and keep us scattered, unfocused and unconscious of what’s in our best interests. We are unable to slow down and get in touch with our souls and listen to what may be better for us.

This world is so extravagantly abundant, how to choose? With so many attractive opportunities vying for attention what takes priority? In times where I feel pressured to accomplish ,becoming frenzied ,I have  consciously done the opposite. I have decided to first regain peace, get centered and then choose. More often I end up doing  nothing because being overly busy and anxious means it is time to take a step back, rejuvenate then reevaluate.  Get back in touch with the real me. Anything that is putting a damper on my joy, inspiration, freedom and creativity must be examined and remedied if possible. For example…there are so many choices about how to live, what is healthiest, what about the environment, there are so many factors to consider, it can be crazy trying to do the best thing, So I decided if it was making my life too complicated I had to let some things go. First world problems, but too many choices can complicate life, as can too much doing , sacrificing doing for others and neglecting self, activity to keep up with the Joneses, hedonism, addictions and mindless activities can isolate us from the logical heart of our souls…we in a world of seeming abundance become limited and boxed in because we can’t hear ourselves and don’t want to. It seems easier to seek the physical, concrete, tangible aspects for relief.  Or easier to let the world tell us what we should be doing, giving our power away. With the view , “All this spirituality and meditation is too woo woo and boring. It’s just brainwashing and is not reality.”  Not being responsible for living a life that is true to our deepest wishes, loving desires and greatest joy.

I wonder why some want constant stimulation? I wonder if maybe we are running from our truths and avoiding facing ourselves, denying and deceiving ourselves…trying to find relief in buying the next new thing, obsessing over, being scandalized about news/media, politics/religion, criticizing others/gossip, escaping by paying attention and participating in fleeting external trivia which has little to do with overall life satisfaction, joy and personal growth. Am I really gonna remember this at the end of my life? What matters most? If I am still and quiet with myself, what do I hear? What am I thinking and feeling? Is there a void that I can’t seem to fill? What am I afraid of? Is something missing?

When I decided that something had to give, I slowed down and created space by simplifying my life, then I could hear myself and became honest with myself. I was willing to stop and just be so I could catch up with my logical heart and hear my truth. Yes, I had demons to face in my habits of thought and yes, I was seeking for that missing something. I sought external things to try and find relief, but the tugging emptiness like something was missing would never relent,  I had become dependent on outer aspects of life to fill me, to cause good feelings, but they were not lasting. Pretty soon I was searching again with nothing quite satisfying. Often wanting to escape, to just get away from it all…I couldn’t figure it out. I had to allow myself to just be for long stretches of time to regain my sense of self.

What do I mean by “just be?” I told myself there was nothing I absolutely had to do, that I was free to choose. I did not have to meet anyone else’s expectations. That I could live simply and take time to breathe and explore me. I had spent my whole life trying to become what I believed was expected of me, now it was my turn to figure out what it was I really wanted, who I really was, because if I didn’t then I could expect more of the unexpected, like health scares. I had become disconnected from me, driven to distraction by running away from unhealed traumas and allowing other’s and society’s perceived expectations to rule me. That something missing? Well, it was me.

In the quiet you can hear yourself, and if honest I bet there are some pretty unhealthy thoughts whirling around and perhaps maybe some wildly intrusive ones as well. We don’t talk about it because people may think we are crazy? And there are also healthy, unconditionally loving, flowing, warm , uplifting ones., thankfully….these are ones we can trust, those from our logical hearts 🙂 What I heard when I finally got honest with myself was shocking. I really did not love and approve of myself. I was telling myself some pretty hopeless and hurtful things. I had some inner wounds that needed healing. I finally faced my fears and allowed what I was afraid of to be known by me and realized I had a lot of pain, anger, resentment and unforgiveness. My thoughts were unloving of me, with a heap of self loathing. I placed blame and judged certain aspects of life which really did not serve my well being at all. I had become resistant to the flow of life by reliving thoughts/hurts/stories from the past and blaming judging things in the present and afraid of the future, of the what ifs?

Once I owned up to this negative pattern of thinking, I could work on ways of improving my state of being. And allow my logical heart to guide the way. But I had to get quiet to hear what my soul was missing….I was missing me, my connection to the logical heart was filtered/blocked by my habituation in this fear filled physical world. So the next step was to reconnect with self. First, get quiet, meditate, simplify, second self awareness, then….what’s next? Sorting through the fear, forgiving and healing. Ultimately surrendering to love and oneness.

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Michelle Miyagi
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