Noises Off Experiment: Completed!
This week has been pushing back the cuticle of noise and distraction to reveal some lovely healthy brand spanking new thoughts and sources of creativity underneath. Like pushing back a cuticle, it has involved some commitment; not because I have particularly missed noise and distraction, but because, if you have read the rest of my blog posts, you will know that I have been preoccupied with my thoughts to the detriment of thinking about my body and ‘the moment’.
And this has been mighty frustrating at times …
Overall, I think I’ve made some headway. I’m proud to say that I don’t crave an episode of Mad Men or even John Humphreys in the morning and although I’m a long way from ‘cured’ (which is completely the wrong phrase to use) I feel more fulfilled and excited by the prospect of living a quieter life.
So what have I found out from this week?
I can be more productive if I take the time to switch off external noise as far as possible and engage a little. And my choice of words is deliberate – there is a big difference between swtiching off and blocking out, which would have required some effort on my part and would have meant that I was still having to account and repair for outside distraction. Nope, best to cut it off at the source, which means no telly, radio or music. Rip off the plaster!
My mind, as it turns out is not a lonely wanderer, but an amateur rockclimber. It has all the kit, but by golly is it nervy! It clings to precipices of dark thoughts, refusing to budge for hours, dangling on the same phrase, riffing on the idea of ‘you can’t do this you can’t do this you can’t do this’, rather than loosely swinging from moment to moment like an elegant ‘now’ monkey. How I long to be an elegant ‘now’ monkey!
But who knows? Awareness is half the battle and being forced to listen to my thoughts incessantly has made me take them less seriously than before. I feel that if I keep turning off that which I am not consciously listening to, I may be able to live more easily in the present. A week is a starting point, and I will maintain an audio fast as a practice, maybe two days of the seven to begin with…. and take it from there.
But if you are interested in living mindfully I strongly recommend taking a break from outside noise to foster your creativity and mental balance. One day we all might And move from the cliff-face of distraction to the treetops of fulfillment!