The Busier You Are, the More You Need Quiet Time

Serious thinkers should think about spending less time on social media if they want to move beyond the noise. To generate good ideas and quality work requires quiet.

Author Leo Tolstoy, JK Rowling, Stephen King, George Orwell, investor Ray Dalio, choreographer Twyla Tharp, inventor Nikola Tesla, psychologist Carl Jung,  and the list goes on. They all had disciplined practices for managing the processing of thoughts that comes from deep silence. And have described habits of silence as important factors in their success.

This recent study, as well as this one shows the mental health benefits of silence too.

But cultivating silence isn’t just about minimizing your social media use. Real sustained silence, the kind that facilitates clear and creative thinking, quiets inner chatter.

Our mind is always chattering. One second it’s chattering about how frustrated you are about the car in front of you and the next second it’s chattering about what you need to do this weekend. It’s totally random bouncing from one thought to the next. If you listen to your chatter you will notice that it’s like the narration of a movie going on up there.

This chatter makes it tough to make room for truly different perspectives or radically new ideas. We sometimes get a taste for it in the shower or laying on the beach on vacation – where ideas often surface. You need headspace to grasp the big picture. It’s in those deeper modes of attention that truly new ideas are found.


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