When I was young, the noise was kind of loud. What was worse is that I didn't understand it. My escape was the pool. With swimming, I could escape my mind and just be. I could be in my body where it was at that moment. Things were clean and clear. Yes, there was a coach giving sets, kids both doing them and goofing off, but the beauty was in the being within the doing. It doesn't mean that it wasn't hard or exhausting. It doesn't mean I wasn't having fun or always making send offs. What I was, was just me. I was my deeper self in the pleasure of existence, playing out in the action of swimming, celebrating life. It really is that simple.
The doorway to stillness, at that time, was swimming. The muffled quiet under the water accentuated the "just-me" time with my body. The constant physical movement in a rhythm based on the requirements of the set, brought me further into the stillness. The set's challenge kept me present in the moment and in my body rather than in my head.
I have found other doorways to stillness from a cup of tea, to prayer, to meditation, to a walk, to yoga, and even back in the pool where I feel most at home. Stillness is merely a doorway to yourself. It can feel scary because of the many thoughts we carry that have clung to us along the way rather than moving through our heads like clouds in the sky. It can feel uncomfortable because starting something new is always a bit awkward. It can feel painful, because your deeper self has been yearning for it and you haven't been listening. Tears can come. But just like anything, tears cleanse, awkwardness finds a rhythm and distance is found as we learn to observe thoughts.
Look for stillness in the quiet that brings you happiness or joy. Stillness happens in movement as well as in a stationary body. But, what it does require is permission giving. Permission giving for time, permission giving to play in the awkwardness of finding rhythm, permission giving for failure as you walk your journey, permission giving to explore and just observe.
And, sometimes we need other's permission...a good friend to say, "take a risk, I know you will find yourself...what I have found is beautiful!" If you need that friend, I am here...go for it! Our shared humanity is found in the life journey that we each take. Know that I am walking it with you!