SAD & Silence

Know the secret of silence. . . Being silent doesn’t shut down your mind, it only activates a deeper type of intelligence.  

Richard Carlson, author

The holidays of light occur during winter when darkness fills more of our wakeful hours. On December 7, the shortest day of 2022 (yes before the solstice this year), daylight started to increase by a speck each day. I always rejoice knowing the days are getting longer. There is, for some, a pressure from lack of light, the onset of dark moods (SAD is very real). On top of that, the season loudly beckons us to shop, spend money, eat too much, rush around, not miss a bargain. Where’s silence or inner peace in this often frenetic hullabaloo?   

Mindfulness teaches us to pause especially when the din is a roar. Choose any random moment of stress to stop yourself; take an exaggerated slow four-square counting breath, maybe two or three. Your breath is your anchor. Creating inner quiet is where we find refuge and renewal connecting to the heart more than the head. Carlson says silence is where all the inspiration and solutions lie anyway. We’re just addicted to frantic, the monkey-mind wreaking havoc because it’s a comfortable noisy avoidant habit.  

This year be boldly self-compassionate and grateful for the magic of mindfulness. It turns up the quiet allowing light to vibrate from within and letting loudness lose its pull.  See my Turn Up Your Inner Quiet list of mindful ways to cultivate fearless precious silence.  You knew I would surely give you things to practice. 

Wishing you peaceful joy in celebrating your inner quiet, your own light, and stillness in your heart for 2023. Thank you for being part of my journey.  

Turn up the quiet. Love wants to dance. Love Dance
Composer Ivan Lins/Lyricist Paul Williams)

Turn Up Your Inner Quiet List for the New Year!  

  1. Gaze intently at landscape paintings (Camille Corot’s impressionist works are magnificent for this) as you tap your thymus gland (master gland of the immune system). Doing this daily at random quiets the nervous system among other mind-body benefits. Preventive medicine and qigong.       
  2. Practice gratitude. There is a unique power in daily journal writing. Record at least three things you can be grateful for right now. 
  3. Practice random acts of kindness.
  4. Visualize warm white/gold light streaming into your body from the top of your head (the ‘qi’ of Qigong) activating your entire cellular system to light up like a dance party. Preventive medicine.  
  5. Smile/laugh every day. Laugh yoga exists! Our organs, tissues, cells love laughing. Again, preventive medicine.
  6. Listen to music you love that fills you with warm fuzzies. Probably not loud or too fast.  This link will take you to a quieter version of the song above that always makes me happy/sad, smile/cry, feel like singing with a sense of hope. Still more preventive medicine.
  1. Walk backward whenever you think of it. It’s good for balance. I do it every day. Brain power!  
  2. Sing out loud. It activates endorphins and happy chemicals in the brain. Music can lighten your dour mood, dispel malaise, and chase away mind-fog. More brain food. 
  3. When the sun is out, stand in it for 5 minutes. It’s always summer somewhere. 
  4. Eat more slowly savoring each mouthful. 
  5. Take minute vacations by stopping to look at a rose, or a cloud, or read a good book.
  6. Thank yourself every day for all you are, all you do, and all you have.