What assurance in my soul
On the stormy sea
Jesus speaks to me
And the billows cease to roll
Growing up, I often heard the lyrics of the popular hymn “Blessed Quietness” at church. It was easy to sing and remember, but I admit that it didn’t hold much meaning to me as a child. As an adult, I appreciate this song much more, as I’ve come to value and understand the power of silence, of quietness, of stillness.
We live in the age of saturated noise. Notification bells. Phones ringing. Televisions and radios blasting. Constant “dings” from social media and news outlets delivering doom every hour on the hour. There’s gossip, daily demands, and stressful conversations. Kids screaming, neighbors arguing and small talk in the break room. Everywhere you go there’s noise.
There must be a way of escape from the chaos, and a reason to do so. Aside from a little sanity, there are huge benefits to quieting the noise:
When was the last time you evaluated yourself? Like really self-reflected? Although introspection could pose as intimidating — especially the possibility of discovering something you may not like — self-awareness is the beautiful result. Probing questions could be: why do I think the way I think? Why do I do what I do? Why do I think or believe this way about a particular idea? Who am I? Who do I want to become?
Getting rid of the noise to look within doesn’t have to be a deeply philosophical exercise. But the more time you evaluate your thinking, words, and actions, the more you get to know yourself. And the more you know yourself, the better you can self-correct, gain confidence, know what you want and need, and understand those things that you should eliminate from yourself or outside sources to help you grow into a better human being.
Sadly, there are many who don’t take the time to quiet the outside noise and spend time with themselves—really get to know themselves. Imagine a world where you get to define who are, not everyone else. It’s actually possible, but it requires deeper and more frequent looks in the mirror.
Deep thinking without distraction
It’s hard to clear the mind and think clearly when it’s clouded with worry, to-do lists, distractions, and outside opinions. What could you achieve with deep thinking? Well, a lot. There are some things in life that require more than a quick thought. It could be coming up with business ideas, evaluating a life decision, solving a complex problem, or formulating a strategy. A few minutes (or hours) of quiet time can be all you need to put some focus and intention behind your thoughts. The possibilities that can come from a thought are endless.
Whatever your beliefs may be, it’s energizing to connect to a source. For me, God is the source that I connect to gain strength, purpose, energy, and assurance outside of myself. Prayer keeps me grounded and affirmed. For whatever source you may choose, prayer and/or meditation allows the mind to be still, reset and reenergize. I believe it’s truly a privilege to be able to find peace through these methods.
Creativity is a funny thing because it comes in all forms and can be cultivated in any situation. It can come through music, inspired by a conversation or conjured up on a random walk through the neighborhood. Creative thoughts can also make its entrance into your mind in quiet times and even in your sleep. It doesn’t even require intentional thinking. Sometimes the most creative thoughts surface when you just simply sit and allow yourself to “be”.
When was the last time you made a real effort to get quiet — whether it be taking a walk in nature, dedicating time to read a book, or spending time alone to sit and write your thoughts?
Quietness is a gift and peace is a choice. The absence of external and internal noise isn’t always easily attainable, but it is a privilege that should be sought after and appreciated.