We are living through unprecedented times. A time that feels both chaotic and uncertain. We are all being asked to change our normal routine. And in many ways, it may feel as if we are being forced to slow down.
I prefer to think of it as we are being invited into stillness.
The idea of being in stillness is counter-cultural to our fast-paced, always on the go society. Multi-tasking is the norm, long to-do lists the standard and every second of the day is scheduled.
Right now, this is not possible. Although some people are trying with coronavirus bucket lists, or trying to write that next bestseller or other such endeavors to make this time “productive”. And look, if that is your jam, great!
I also know there is tremendous power that comes from dropping into stillness. In fact, I’ve found there are at least 10 benefits to saying yes to stillness especially right now.
Being in stillness reduces responses in the parasympathetic system, which is responsible for fight or flight. In turn, it increases responses in the sympathetic system, responsible for rest and relaxation. This area of your brain may be very active right now. Stillness can help calm your mind allowing you to feel more at peace and less stressed out.
Improves ability to handle adversity
These are trying times for sure. And they may become more challenging in the months to come. The peace that comes from practicing stillness will support you as you deal with this and other of life’s difficulties. You may not be able to change your situation, but the practice of stillness can help you respond to them differently.
Anchors you into the present
Much of the anxiety and stress felt in life are related to future events. Things that need to get done, plans that have to be changed, outcomes that could go terribly wrong. All of your thoughts are focused on the future. Stillness anchors you into the present moment so you can deal with what is rather than what might be.
Increases listening skills
As you learn to be more present, a natural by-product is you get better at listening to others. You stop waiting to talk and instead learn to actually hear what others are saying and you respond more effectively and empathetically. This leads to richer more rewarding relationships. And now is a perfect time to strengthen relationships with those we care about the most.
While stillness is not intended for problem-solving, you can often find clarity around a situation that has been troubling you. Stepping back from it can give you a perspective that you won’t see when in the middle of it. Stillness offers you a way to step back.
Able to hear your intuition
There is a cacophony of voices out there trying to tell you how you should be, what you should do, how you should look, and a myriad of other shoulds. In stillness, you learn to silence those voices, tapping more easily into your intuition to know what’s right for you.
Improves your sleep
The generally relaxed state achieved in stillness can help you fall asleep more easily, leading to a more restful night’s sleep. It can also help you fall back asleep faster if you wake up in the middle of the night.
Being in stillness pulls you out of your left brain and allows your right brain to be more activated. Your right brain is the creative center of the brain. Increased activity in this area of the brain offers a change in perspective and can often lead to unexpected outcomes.
Probably one of the unintentional great benefits of practicing stillness is you become more aware of how you are in the world. You notice yourself better as you interact with those around you and you notice how you are adding or taking away from the relationship. You start taking ownership of your role in the things happening in your life rather than staying in a victim or victim-like mindset.
Connects you to a higher power
Practicing stillness makes you aware that there is a higher power at work in the world. Your story is part of a much larger story that is unfolding. You are co-creator with a force that while bigger and more powerful than you still conspires on your behalf. Awareness of this keeps you grounded.
I know practicing stillness feels nearly impossible to do but I invite you to give it a try. In time, I promise you will experience some of these benefits.
Here’s to you finding stillness and rising into your greatness.
From my heart to yours,
P.S: If are feeling overwhelmed by things right now and would like some support, click here to schedule a complimentary call with me. There is no obligation, simply a chance to receive support. Schedule your free call today.