Days of Silence
Days of Silence can be extremely beneficial to recharge and regain focus. Without all the noise, external stimulation from, well, everything.
You can plan them or embrace the opportunity when it's presented.
This means you go about a normal day (going with the flow, without goal-oriented tasks) minimizing or eliminating communication, which is exhausting to the body and the mind, vocally especially but even emailing and texting has your gears and emotions turning. Our senses are usually on overload with pollution that you may not even realize exists in our daily environment. The humming of machines and lightbulbs, traffic, and notifications dinging incessantly. (If you know me, you know my phone has been on do not disturb for years.)
By eliminating the stimuli your brain and imagination generate new thoughts and ideas. This time spent in silence actually improves cell development in the brain. Improving the overall state of calmness, sleep, lowering heart rate and blood pressure. This is where innovation comes from!
I spend as much of my time in silence (which is all relative, but its a lot to some and not so much to me) I think much of my time is spent stimulated. (people, cars, dogs, kids, tv, music,) I don't measure these occurrences, but I do balance them.
I think an entire day with limited to no technology, and communication (no vocal) is certainly more beneficial than a car ride home contemplating a subject or not but simply being in that silence. But I recognize they happen less often than that car ride home, so I embrace them when they do happen.
Whether you are painting, working, cleaning, reading or playing with the pets. It's done in silence. You don't call anyone, you limit media streaming in, you rest your vocal cords and rests your brain that has information constantly coming in (which releases stress hormones.) Allowing yourself to choose what to think about rather than just reacting to what's happening around you. Do I want to move the couch here, where is it that I want to travel to, what is my passion, how do I reinvent myself and pivot careers? How do I want to develop the company, what do I see for myself in 5 years? How can I solve this problem?
You will find that you are more sensitive to noises though, so if you spend your day in this meditative state, and your dog begins barking or your spouse comes home on a tangent, be aware that you may ask for the volume to be lower or the dog to pause as you recognize what she is alerting you to. Since after all you've been hearing tiny birds singing or the a/c kicking on, or just your inner monologue pondering quantum mechanics or the start of a blog bouncing around in your head that you want to share.
Afterall, this is our default state. A state of stillness, calm, quiet.
It may be hard to believe for those with a constant chatter, but the more you engage in this activity, the more you will find that even that internal monologue slows, with a lower volume, the ability to go with the flow comes with less effort and the ease and enjoyment of the experience arise as we connect with ourselves and the world around us in ways that restore us.
The next step is tapping into the awareness that is always present in our minds, but that is shadowed with our busy lives.