“Silence is the sleep that nourishes wisdom”
― Francis Bacon
With the hustle and bustle of the holiday period - the family and socialising and abundance of excitement - it’s nice to have some quiet. To come back to being ‘in the flow’. To feel connected.
For you, it might be stirred by a lazy afternoon on the beach, an inspired morning of creativity, meditative movement the yoga mat, the rhythm of footsteps on a mountain trek, or perhaps a really great book.
‘Flow’ is a timeless, effortless space. In those moments, this arbitrary thing we call time ceases to matter, because all of our awareness is directed to the present. There is no worry about the future, or dwelling on the past. We are just here, simply be-ing.
As you read this, your mind may already be protesting with excuses and rationale, or resisting even the idea of stillness. You are not alone!
Notice it, and let it be there. After all, the first trick to moving past an obstacle is to acknowledge it exists.
When was the last time you consciously made space to move beyond a thought-driven, neck-up experience?
DISCONNECT TO CONNECT: 3 ESSENTIALS
1. Allow for silence and simplicity.
We live in a world that shouts. Yet connection requires a deep kind of listening, and observing. To hear and to see, we must first quieten down.
This starts with the mind. Many of us regularly ‘detox’ our bodies through a cleaner, greener diet; yet it is our mind that creates much of the tension that accumulates in our bodies.
There is something special about reconnecting to the tangible, and finding flow in the real world. Moving away from the rabbit hole of a flat electronic screen, and into the multi-dimensional world experienced through the body, its movement, and breath.
Set aside a time, perhaps once a week, and simply disconnect your mind from the ‘cloud’ world of technology. Remove yourself from the temptation of social media, emails, and all the things that fills up much of our otherwise free time, to free your mind instead
You might try a whole weekend of tech-free living, or perhaps start with a few hours on a slow Sunday morning. Whatever you choose, commit to it, and offer your attention to the conversation, the book, the music, or sounds of nature or even the simplicity of your own breath, creating space, and letting go. Cultivate a space, an inner sanctuary, that you can come back to whenever you feel unsettled, to quench your thirst for peace, solitude or quiet.
Featured: Women's Camisole (Grey) | $49
2. Hang out with your inner child.
If you have been around a young child recently, you will notice how much detail they observe that we, as adults, casually dismiss because it’s ‘not important’ to the mission, task, goal we have at hand. Taking a walk with a child can be an experience in seeing with new eyes.
So why not take a walk, learn something new, with the mind of a child - or better, with your nephew, your daughter, or grandchild? Remember what it was like to see the world for the first time, to notice what we commonly class as mundane or everyday, as miracles in their own right.
Disconnect with your usual way of perceiving the world, and connect to curiosity. Explore writing with your opposite hand; perhaps tasting the sensation of an ice cube and really noticing the experience of cold, from tongue to throat to stomach; or dig into the garden and plant new life, connecting to the soil and the fresh warm air.
As Betty Smith writes - ‘Look at everything as though you were seeing it for the first or last time. Then your time on earth will be filled with glory’.
Instead of reaching out for more, try reaching in, deepening and broadening into the sensations of each experience. It makes life richer, and so much sweeter.
3. Practice compassion.
The voice with which we speak to ourselves, is intimately connected to the way we connect with the world; if we find ourselves judging others harshly, it’s often a sign that we are also judging ourselves. Especially when around others, we can easily take on voices from outside of ourselves, telling us what we can and can’t, should and shouldn’t do.
As meditation teacher Tara Brach emphasises, what you feel is always real, but not always true. Through disconnecting from our usual voice, we make room to hear this inner dialogue as an observer. What are you telling yourself, and whose voice is really speaking? Is this expectation really true for you, and is it helping you grow into the person you wish to be?
By quietening down and listening compassionately, we create more space for recognising patterns of behaviour and thought; more space to begin making empowered choices about how we choose to feel and act. Start with kindness within, and try it out as a new way to frame your view of the world - and your sense of self.
Featured: Women''s Leggings Plain (Grey) | $49
Life is filled with distractions that can remove us far from our intentions. It is thus important to consciously disconnect from the noise, in order to rediscover connection with our surroundings, and hear the wisdom hibernating beneath the chaos.
This new year, we challenge you to set aside the time, and courageously venture into landscapes beyond your usual walk in life. Go with the flow, enrich your senses, and see what you can discover!
We'd love to hear your reflections! Let us know what you find by leave us a comment below, and feel free to share these ideas with friends and family.
For more Earth Life Balance tips, subscribe to our newsletter below, or click here to see our other posts.
About the Author: Lucy Lawes is an advocate for mindful living.