Welcome back to the SHIFT Challenge, where we’re shifting our lives to more accurately reflect what’s truly most important.
Our first shift this month is to Find the Quiet.
It’s Noisy Out There!
“The good and the wise lead quiet lives.” – Euripides
There’s no doubt that we live in a noisy world.
Our smart phones are constantly beeping or buzzing, televisions are on for hours a day in almost every home and everywhere we go we hear noise whether it’s from traffic, elevator music or construction.
And it’s not just physical noise. The news stories of world events, the pressures of work, the emotional drain of difficult relationships — all create “noise” in our minds.
We have to be intentional about finding quiet.
As Benedictine monk Peter Minard says,
Not merely an absence of noise, Real Silence begins when a reasonable being withdraws from the noise in order to find peace and order in his inner sanctuary.
We need to find peace and order in all of the areas of our lives for the sake of our physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.
Shifting to Quiet
This week I encourage you to choose one (or more, if you’re adventurous!) of these tiny shifts to make your life quieter.
Let’s quiet our spending by finding one tiny shift we can make in order to add some money to savings — even if it’s only $5.
Skip buying the fancy cheese, plan some cheap meals, make your coffee at home or avoid Target. (The Dollar Spot gets me every. single. time.)
Let’s quiet the clutter and mess in our homes by creating a haven of beauty and rest in one small area.
It could be your nightstand, your coffee table or your kitchen counter. Focus on keeping that one area clean and clutter free this week and maybe even buy some flowers to pretty it up.
Let’s quiet the inner critic who tells us we’re not doing enough, that we’re failing.
Think about the words you would say to a friend who needs encouragement and say those positive and affirming words to yourself throughout the day: “I’m a good mother.”; “I am wise and can make good choices.”; “I’m freakin’ awesome!”
Let’s quiet our critical speech and focus on saying positive words to our loved ones. Start the day by telling your spouse and children what you really love about them. Throughout the day, tell your child what he is doing right rather than focusing on what is wrong.
Let’s quiet our calendars by removing one obligation or activity to make time for family. Postpone volunteering, delegate a task or move an appointment so that you can create space in your schedule.
Remember, SHIFT is about refocusing on our top priorities and realigning ourselves with our values, not about stress.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, choose ONE tiny shift to make this week in the area that needs the most attention, and trust that you will be able to make more positive changes in the weeks and months to come. Rome wasn’t built in a day, right?
I’m a notorious fault-finder so I’ll be focusing on saying positive words to myself and my family. I’ll also be working on keeping my kitchen table clean as it has become a staging area as I continue to declutter my office. My family should be able to eat dinner without moving piles of stuff out of the way!
I would love to hear which SHIFTs you will be making so leave a comment.
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