Getting Quiet, Part 2

Last week, I wrote about getting quiet.  In one sense I was talking about the quiet that means the absence of sound (specifically, music and podcasts).  But at the end, if you noticed, I mentioned this:

In our world, which is hyper-everything, it’s okay to skip the latest podcast recording (even the one that a friend told you was so good), it’s okay not to read all the blogs and all the articles, it’s okay not to view every post on Instagram or Facebook.

I began that article writing about quiet as it relates to the presence/absence of sound, but linked closely with that conversation of quiet is a consideration of cumulative input in general (sound, or otherwise).

Too much sound becomes noise.  Too much stimulation (of any kind) also becomes noise.

Our digital age has made learning and connecting and being inspired as easy as a swipe of the finger or the click of a mouse.  Instantly, ideas and inspiration are right in front of our noses. Once a day, twenty times a day. Know this:  we make choices about how much we let in.

Certainly, some of what’s available these days is fantastic.  Some of it, less so.  Either way, it becomes a question of what we let in.  It becomes a question of how much we swipe and how much we click.  It becomes a question of how much we look outward instead of looking inward.

This isn’t to say we should stop reading the internet or printed materials. Of course not!  This isn’t to say we should stop scrolling on Instagram or pinning on Pinterest.  Of course not!  Learning is critical and empowering.  Being inspired is critical and empowering.  But…

At what point do we set aside the ideas of others and rest with our own?  At what point are we saturated with the inspiration of others and so begin making space to create our own? 

Again, we arrive on the doorstep of choice.  I won’t tell you how to manage stimulation, input, noise.  You must decide what is right for you. But I invite you to think about how you feel when you scroll and swipe and click.  Do you feel lighter?  motivated? heavy?  less than?  If it’s something along the lines of the first two, carry on.  If you find yourself falling into the camp of the last two, perhaps reconsider your engagement.  (and know that your response to that question might vary from day to day) (because you vary from day to day)

It’s not lost on me that you’re here in this digital space, that you’ve clicked through to share these words with me.  I am part of the “noise” of the digital world.  But this is the hope I hold in the corners and folds of my heart: that what you find here with me is not too much or too little in the way of stimulation, that it is, somehow, just right.  I hope you find inspiration here…and important to me is that you take any inspiration – any feeling of ah yes, me too– and that you carry it with you in your own life, that you feel it for you.

I’m not here to give you five steps towards achieving this or that. I’m here, quite simply, to be with you.  And maybe to remind you to get quiet enough to hear the whispers of your heart.  Be inspired by others and connect with others and learn from others (oh yes, please do) (and thank you for being here).  But at a certain point, set that all aside…it’s not going anywhere…you can come to it another day.  Just be with you.

You’re doing okay.  Also, it’s okay not to be okay sometimes.  Either way, make intentional choices when allowing input (or any kind) into your life. Take a little here and take a little there, but never forget to stay with you.

Make space for quiet.
Make space for intentional choice.
Make space for you.

Here’s something to keep in mind:  It’s hard to hear the whispers of your heart when there’s too much noise.

 

Sending a little love your way, m

 

 

 

 

10 thoughts on “Getting Quiet, Part 2

  1. Your “noise” has always been JUST RIGHT! I enjoy the quietness of your posts; the inspiration and encouragement you give. About two month ago I began to look seriously at how I was spending my online time. I now visit fewer places and only spend a few minutes in the morning and then again in the evening online. I love the quieter life I have now and the extra time I have! Such a good post!

    1. Cathy, you’ve made me smile! I’m glad my ‘noise’ is just right!!! Thank you for letting me know; I appreciate your words (and you) so much!
      And so good to hear how you’ve been thinking about all this…have been making changes of your own. It’s so true the time that can get freed up!

      Thanks for being here. xo

  2. This is something I have thought a lot about these past few months, especially with my art. I follow a number of artists on Instagram and their ability to produce (what appears to be) a staggering amount of art leaves me feeling discouraged and in many ways less than. I have been seriously thinking of unfollowing some of these in order to ease that feeling of never being able to match their drive and just focusing on a few. I also think this will help me discover my own style. I recently did the same with the blogs I follow and it has made a huge difference in how I approach my own.

    Great post, Michelle. For the record, whenever you show up in my mailbox I instantly click on to visit. : ) It is a lovely quiet corner of the world. xoxo

    1. Oh, Grace, I hear you. It’s such a delicate dance between finding inspiration and sometimes feeling overwhelm/less than. That’s why I constantly check in with myself when playing online. If I’m not feeling some amount of joy/happy, then why bother? It might be the case that you unfollow for the time being, and maybe once you’ve found your groove, you can re-follow, if so inclined (or not!). I’ll tell you that I have unfollowed some people in the past…crazy talented and wonderful and popular individuals…but for some reason, the account was a negative trigger for me. It’s really okay to step aside.

      It’s scary sometimes to look to ourselves instead of to others who are ‘successful’. Looking to others for inspiration is wonderful and definitely has its place…but we must ALWAYS look to ourselves as well.
      I feel you working hard in your corner of the world, Grace. Keep going.

      And thank you for your kind words. I’m so glad you visit my quiet corner of the world. Big love. xo

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