Kids screaming. Work deadlines. Burnt toast. Unexpected power bills. A broken tooth. These are the things found in some of our days. It can be tough to stay resilient and happy in the face of such pressures. And then, there are the more serious moments, such as a cancer diagnosis, an accident, or the traumatic death of a beloved one. How is an individual to thrive in, not just survive during, life?
The Lord knows exactly the answers to that question. We recognize this. He is guiding us, desiring that we discover for ourselves all answers He is so willing to give. We also know this. But sometimes I personally forget how readily I could find what I’m seeking by way of peace. Sometimes, my heart feels noisy, racing, a cacophony of emotions. Maybe you can relate?
In times such as this, the solutions in the scriptures help me tremendously to find the quiet that is necessary so I can reconnect with peace. Reading General Conference talks and cross-referencing them to prior talks helps me also see a pattern of safety and truth that can calm my soul on the days I choose to follow this pattern. The words of the Lord give me an enabling power to seam together my life’s rips and tears in ways that no mortal thread can.
There are also physical forms of peaceful support that the Lord shares so generously with us, His beloved children. I learned one of these ways of peace from my youngest son, and I’d love to share it with you now. To illustrate, years ago I came down the stairs one day and found Stephen, my seven-year-old, stretched out on the couch, in quiet. I was concerned. He was an active boy. What could be keeping him so still on the sofa? To the best of my memory, the conversation I started went something like this:
“Are you ok?” I asked.
My small son simply nodded his head up and down.
“What are you doing?” I said.
He responded, “Listening.”
“Listening to what?”
“To the quiet.”
That conversation moved me in ways I find difficult to articulate even now. I smiled at him, and then left the room so that he could continue to ‘listen.’ And then I asked myself, “How often do I listen ‘to the quiet’?”
I began to find time in my days to do the same as my sweet child. I had been so taken with how it had felt to be in a room of stillness. So, here’s now how I do it. I set a timer for five to ten minutes. I sit on the couch or on the porch or in the car and start the timer. And then I think of nothing. I do nothing. I simply ‘listen to the quiet.’
I have found this simple sound bath to be one of the most remarkable, restorative experiences I have had. And the more I remember to incorporate this into my daily living, the more overall equanimity I find. Mental calmness and composure are mine; evenness of temper, especially in a difficult situation, becomes more natural for me. Why? Because the beauty of stillness that I experience in briefly timed moments becomes more inherent to my nature because of that practice. That space of stillness can become my go-to when stressed, which then leaves everyone involved feeling better.
Scientists and researchers might call this practice of ‘listen to the quiet’ a form of mindfulness. They could put this under the umbrella of meditation. To me, none of that matters. I just know that by my choice to ‘listen,’ I’ve found greater resilience when I must hear noise during the rest of the day. For some reason, by carving away just a little bit of time in the form of a sound bath, the rest of my noisy day does not impinge or hurt me like it used to.
Would you like a trackable form to log your own moments when you choose each day to ‘listen to the quiet’? Research shows that when we track a decision and log our careful implementation of it, we are far more successful in carrying it out. I’d love you to have my tracker that I’m using! You can simply download it here. And if you’d like to share your experiences of quiet, you can join the Facebook group, Cindy’s 30 Days to Done, where we are building a camaraderie amongst people who are celebrating strength and resilience. We’d love to have you join us where we can cheer your goodness as we come together to ‘listen to the quiet.’
Cindy Sue Bezas, M.S., is a mindset trainer, author, and speaker who passionately believes all people are capable of great things. She obtained her master’s degree in Adult/Organizational Learning & Leadership from the University of Idaho, and her specific research focused on trauma recovery and low self-image. She is a multi-concussion survivor and host of the Concussion: There Is Hope podcast, which ranked #33 in Mental Health iTunes podcasts in the United States. To subscribe to the podcast for helpful information on concussion research, please visit this link https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/concussion-there-is-hope/id1493243455. To join her Facebook group, Cindy’s 30 Days to Done, click here https://www.facebook.com/groups/cindys30daystodone/ to celebrate small wins in fun ways, 30 days at a time.(If you are experiencing persistent, low mood symptoms, seek the advice of a board-certified mental health provider for assistance. We need you with us!)