. . . I think I’m on to something . . . 

Remember when I was saying that I kept having inspiring thoughts away from the keyboard, but sitting down brought quiet?  I realized that The Quiet is just what I need.  

Call it “Postmarathon let down,” or “Needing a New Project,” or feeling angry about N’s death, or perhaps the beginning of a mid-life crisis.  Call it anything, but the result equaled unexpected bouts of high anxiety and it was really starting to wig me out. Every other minute felt like a dramatic “do or die” crossroads laced with overtones of nihilistic “what’s the point anyway?”.  Andy even agreed that perhaps I should see my old therapist, Barbara, at $170 a pop.  

But that got me thinking, What would Barbara say? Perhaps the very same thing she said to me on my very first appointment with her.  Have I been doing yoga? 

What happens when a person does yoga? Quiet comes. 

So I sat down today with the purpose of being quiet. It didn’t last long; but intention matters. And I realized that I’m not going to THINK my way out of this. I’m going to BE out of it. By breathing. By listening. To nothing. 

It’s no wonder these feelings of anxiety came along.  EVERY. WHERE. WE LOOK there are desperate requests for our attention, our money, our help, our prayers, our time. The information is beeping at us from the gadgets in our hands-attached to our ears-constantly. Here’s one now, literally-just came in. It says, “traffic is exceptionally rad today. may be about 10 min late.”

So the chain of thought becomes: Rad? Is the R near the B on her phone? Or has rad become bad these days? I’m getting old. Or does she mean radical? Is she late so often because I set an awful example? I need to be on time. I need to be more strict. I need to be less strict. I need to take that management seminar. I need to move back east before my parents become fatally ill. I need to clean out the filing cabinets both here and at work first. I need to SHUT THE FUCK UP!

Breathe. What I’m trying to say is that I had underestimated the vast quantity of garbage that I (and every human in modern civilization) is having to cope with. And what is required is more silence. It feels good realizing that.

3 thoughts on “Listen

  1. I hear ya. Since moving to the city, I’ve said more than once I’m at the point where I would pay for silence. Quiet is an absolute essential. I think there was a point in our evolution when sleep took care of everything, but in this crazy world, we need extra quiet time between naps and nighttime rest. I’m glad you’re finding out what works for you – I’m going to give it a try too.

    Thanks, Sam. Good luck. :)

  2. i hate yoga. for all those reasons of: just sitting/lying/standing- being. the marathon i liked. but god, i hate yoga.

    I hear you, Disa! There are MANY days (months & years) when I just plain ain’t gonna do yoga. Thank goodness walking/running is a spiritual discipline also.

  3. I have never tried yoga, but I’ve wanted to for a long time. They say that it really is mind, body and soul altering. Maybe I’ll give it a try at last. I could use an out of body/mind experience a few times a week. I guess yoga is kind of like the “Calgon take me away days”.

    Jenn, given that you are a dietician, I highly recommend you try yoga. I credit it with helping me lose weight. It’s hard to put it into words, because I think the very nature of what I’m trying to explain transcends language. See, I used to be ALL HEAD. I lived in my words, my thoughts. Yoga gave me hours of time when I had to focus on living in my body, listening to the organism I’m inside of, if that makes sense. It taught me to live in my whole self. When I talk this way, my brother rolls his eyes and says, “You’ve been in California too long.

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