The concept of being still is nothing new, however, we continue to have difficulty cultivating our ability to be still in a world that seems to be going more and more swiftly. When we are able to find stillness in the midst of movement all around us we bring a significant positive impact to ourselves and those around us.
Stillness may seem like a treat for some of you and for others this may sound like torture. Although busyness and stillness are not new concepts, we have different challenges in our culture today than we did just a few decades ago. Most of us are within reach of multiple devices that can create tasks, check our calendar, pull up the news, share information with someone and add noise to our lives. The speed at which we can receive news, connect with others, do work and multitask creates gigantic expectations that can swirl our minds into chaos.
When we are busy or fill our minds with thoughts that don’t seem to end, our minds become muddy. This happens without us even realizing the impact it is having. It is like the analogy of boiling a frog starting in cold water. By the time the water is too hot, the frog has remained clueless. Increased clarity comes when we intentionally take time to be still. Clarity gives us insight and direction as to what is important and where our time should be spent.
In addition to clarity, improved physical health is a result of practicing stillness. Improved blood pressure, maintaining healthy weight and increased emotional stability all improve with the use of stillness.
Some of you may read this and think it is a good idea but you won’t put it into practice. Others may attempt to be still once or twice but not see the benefit and stop trying. Others will take the idea of stillness to heart and begin making it a part of everyday. This is the type of practice in which you will receive the benefits of stillness.
Even if it is just five minutes, turn off the TV, put down your phone, turn off the music, get rid of the noise. Close your eyes, take a deep breath and give yourself permission to slow down. If it becomes hard to stop thinking about all of the things in your life, just focus on your breath going in and going out.
Be still today and find peace and comfort from within. Take yourself on the retreat you’ve been longing for, the retreat that comes from within.