Stop the Insanity! I can’t hear myself think!

Music has always been a huge part of my life and especially my workouts; in the car while I’m driving to work, during my runs, at work, while I’m at home.  Until recently, I couldn’t imagine my life without music.   However, during the last several years, I’ve noticed that music, especially since we have it at our fingertips at all times, seems to have become a guest who has overspent his welcome.

I first noticed that music was becoming more than entertainment when I began to see many people wearing earbuds during running races.  As I approached an individual during a difficult point in the race, in need of a little camaraderie or short conversation to ease the drudgery, I found very few people who were not locked up tight in their own mind with full volume music; nope, no conversations or connections there.

I began to resent the earbuds and decided to forego music on my runs.  I wanted to be truly connected to my run.  I wanted to enjoy the sound of my breath and the sights around me instead of zoning out to just get through my runs.  I found that disconnecting for those short moments helped me think and my writing started to come more easily.  I soon didn’t even want to run with music.

As I made that first connection, I began to see how music and “noise” in general were really interfering in my life in a way that was stealing my deeper connections to me and to my attentiveness to life.  I started to connect the silence with yoga, and yoga with the silence.  The two began to intertwine in a way that created a new song in my life.

I learned to let go of the automatic habit of turning the radio on as soon as I got in the car.  I quit blaring music at home when I had a few moments to myself.  I actually began to use the time to think instead of tuning out and turning off my mind. In the process, I became (and am still becoming) less demanding and critical of myself.  I learned to enjoy the silence as a way to connect with my breath and with my body in a compassionate way.  Letting go of “tuning out” left lots of time to tune-in to my business, my yoga practice and my life.

The song of my life now is peace; peace in my life, peace in my mind, peace in my body.  I still listen to music but it no longer haunts my mind as an unwanted guest.  Instead, music brings sweet melodies at the times when I truly need it.

How do you relate to music?  Do you see it as a possible way to escape from life instead of engaging?  Or do you find it a comforting and comfortable friend?  Perhaps it’s both?

 

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4 responses

  1. I totally know what you’re talking about when you automatically switch on the radio in the car or have music blaring at home. When I lived alone, I listened to music constantly because too much silence freaked me out. Now that I live with my boyfriend, I rarely listen to music, but when I do, it’s refreshing and a treat.
    I find that music goes really well with cooking/baking.
    I like how you emphasized how silence is so important and coupled with your yoga practice. I couldn’t agree more. Great blog!

    1. There are definitely times when I find music to enhance my experience, mostly when I’m cleaning house or like you, I love to have a little dinner music, such as jazz, playing in the background while I cook. Thanks for commenting!

  2. I love music! It allows me to go deeper into myself, by connecting with song. I will say, however, that recently our car stereo broke and we had silence in the car rides, and that was quite enjoyable too. But overall, music just makes me happy.

    1. I know – I love music, too. I’ve always loved listening to lots of different styles. And some well-written songs can touch my emotions on levels that nothing else can. That’s why I’m surprised that I am finding a place and a time in my life where it doesn’t fit as well as it used to. But I agree – it can definitely make me happy! Thanks for commenting – I think it’s such an interesting topic and I love hearing other people’s take on it.

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