For the last two weeks, I’ve actively been choosing to spend time in silence.
When I’m on a streetcar, when I’m walking down the street, when I’m waiting for the bus; I put away my headphones and turn off my phone or iPod.
I do this because I feel like I need to give my brain some breathing room. If I’m constantly subjecting it to a non-stop stream of noise and information, when will I ever just think?
If I’m consistently detaching myself from my environment, when will I ever see and hear what’s new to discover?
It’s interesting to me how active this choice has to be. It seems it’s more natural for me to plug myself in, than to just stand, sit or walk. It’s like I can’t commute without a soundtrack. I’ve lost the ability to just be alone with my thoughts. And I find that to be a terrifying.
Thinking, pondering, reflecting… all of those are vital to the idea-generating process I so desperately need to fuel my writing career.
So, I’m actively choosing to be still — to give those quirky ideas the space to float into my brain where they can hatch into something new.