Quiet on The Set!
by: Bob Dare
For a short period of time until “Action” is commanded by the director, the movie set is silent as all involved focus on the tasks to be completed in support of the impending scene to be filmed.
Our lives are like movie sets; one scene after another. But do we ever make it quiet on our sets and allow ourselves to interact with silence? The World is so noisy today and it seems the din never stops. Phones, computers, tablets, televisions, and so many other sources crowd us with words and sound. So many of us have become conditioned to exist while the noises of our times thunder constantly and deny us the gift of solitude.
The other day I found myself on the brink of a mental revolt. I reached my limit of what I could process. The cacophonies of the day were intolerable. I was reminded of that great line from the award-winning movie “Network” in which Mr Beale (played by the late Peter Finch) rose from his newsroom chair, encouraged everyone to rise and state, “I am mad as Hell and I am not going to take it anymore!”
I turned off my tv, my computer, my phone; I silenced my set, and then I sat down, shut my eyes, rid myself of all thoughts and, as if life stopped, quietness surrounded me. The longer I sat, the more the serenity replaced life’s noise, and the more relaxed I became. It took self-discipline not to turn up the volume on the World’s stage but the benefit of tranquility prevailed.
After 20 minutes or so I accepted that I had to return to the ongoing scene. I turned on my laptop……., ummmm, no urgent emails; I turned on my phone……., ummmm, no voice mails or missed calls. Unbelievable as it seemed I realized that I could escape the deafening sounds that we sometimes believe we can’t turn off for fear that we will miss something.
So, here is my challenge to you. Make it quiet on your set! Take 15 to 20 minutes and shut off your devices and sources of sound; sit quietly, dump all your thoughts and imaginations of importance in your mental trash container. Let the absence of noise overwhelm you. Enjoy the solitude and peacefulness that are waiting to reward you. When you return to your scene of life you will see that the few minutes spent in silence lapsed without incidence, and you can finish the day feeling refreshed and renewed.
“Quiet is peace. Tranquility. Quiet is turning down the volume knob on life. Silence is pushing the off button. Shutting it down. All of it.” Khaled Hosseini, The Kite Runner
True Growth Takeaway:
Find the time to turn off the noise in your life.
True Growth Journal Question:
What can I do to gain a period of silence?
About the author: Bob Dare served 28 years in the United States Army. He held every noncommissioned officer leadership position culminating with his last three assignments as Command Sergeant Major for the 25th Infantry Division, United States Army Pacific Command and United States Army Forces Command. Bob is also an executive coach and facilitator for LWM III Consulting.