Silence is Golden
This past summer, I took a few days off from the everyday chaos of life. Why, some may ask? It was summer, beautiful outside, and I live in Montana! This year has been anything but ordinary, mainly due to the effects of COVID. Spring break was cancelled and the kids were home schooled starting in March. I am still hoping to go on a big trip for my birthday, celebrate with my kids on the beach, and make memories. But I am not holding my breath for this year. So, instead of pining about the things that I was not able to do, I decided to take a trip in the mountains. I turned off the technology and just slept, ate, hiked, and took time to breathe. And enjoyed the golden silence.
One aspect of my profession is teaching people, young and old, how to effectively communicate with others. I absolutely love what I do! Being able to speak to one another is often the primary form of communication, though some people use gestures, facial expressions, sign language, and a variety of devices to assist them to communicate. Communication continues to evolve with technology, for better or worse. Sometimes I wish for the old tape recorder answering machines, land lines, and leaving messages on pieces of paper instead of hitting “send.”
Take Time to Unplug
Being able to access anyone instantly through emails, texts, chat rooms, and video calls has made people accessible 24 hours a day 7 days a week. There are those that are great about turning off their technology. However, a lot of people are glued to it all the time. You often see multiple people checking their phones when a beep or ting is heard. I admit, I have been guilty of this. I’m just tired of it. I will keep my phone available when my kiddos are with their dad, or I know I’m expecting a call. Otherwise, I am trying to be less connected. Hence, my exploratory adventure to the mountains.
Silence is Golden…and Amazing
You may not be the type of person that enjoys the silence, but I am. I guess you could call me the typical introvert that enjoys being around people but finds time to recharge when I am alone. My little adventure lead me to staying up in the Spanish Peaks for three nights. Granted, I am probably in the worst shape of my life. Still, the solitude of being by a lake, in a tent, wandering around and exploring, and not having to answer the phone, talk to people, or check emails was too much too pass up. Honestly, besides the hordes of mosquitoes (that thankfully could not get through my rain jacket) and those nasty horse flies, it was perfect. The silence WAS golden.
Being able to “turn off” that part of my life made me realize that I had too many things going on. I needed that time to recharge and find my focus again.
I am very fortunate to be able to take a trip to the mountains. I know that there are a lot of people that are unable to do so, but you can still find time to “turn off.” If that means turning your phone on silence for even five minutes, sitting on the steps while the children nap, walking around the block, or even sitting in your car for a few minutes before going in to do the weekly grocery shopping…try to take the time to leave the ability of the world to communicate with you and you with it. I think it will be worth it. For another perspective of how and why to unplug, click out Becoming Minimalist. And for activities that do not include technology, check out Growing Up Montana Style and Summer Scavenger Hunts.