Silence Is Power

Silence is the preparation to understand the world around us. Of course, it all depends on how we use it.

  • An earnest silence nourishes the soul and enables awareness. It allows new thoughts to emerge as it stimulates a receptive mind.
  • An enthusiastic silence creates alertness and interest to hear and encourage clarification.
  • Silence brings calm and serenity with others and nature.
  • Silence is a way to doze, to resent, to rage, to be indifferent or detached.

Although there are many intents and purposes for silence, one cannot deny that it plays a vital role in creating something better, meaningful, and peaceful. In the creative world, from composers to writers and artists, silence is used to create a space to communicate ideas without agitation to enhance the experience and encourage comprehension.

Artwork by Michael Whelan

Maybe we should all contemplate the power of silence and how effectively we can communicate without rattling on.

Truly, we should all learn to dwell in silence to express our thoughts and engagement. Knowing that silence is one of the conditions within our power to control, this dynamic state must be part of our daily lives. Certainly, immersing in silence is not an easy task. There are many scenarios that we lose the capacity to be silent, in highly stressful situations, in serious discussions or even self-talk. However, the core understanding of the following statements can help us navigate our emotions and use silence to connect with our creative and strong self.

Silence to calm a situation

You don’t have to turn this into something. It doesn’t have to upset you.”

Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 6.52

Engage in meaningful talk

“Be silent for the most part, or, if you speak, say only what is necessary and in a few words. Talk, but rarely, if the occasion calls you, but do not talk of ordinary things—of gladiators or horses races or athletes or of meats or drinks—these are topics that arise everywhere.”

Epictetus

As a stoic visualize the worst thing that can happen and champion you fears

“Silence is a lesson learned through life’s many sufferings.”

Seneca

You are in control 

“Remind yourself that your task is to be a good human being; remind yourself what nature demands of people. Then do it, without hesitation, and speak the truth as you see it. But with kindness. With humility. Without hypocrisy.”

Marcus Aurelius

The best answer to anger is silence

“Better to trip with the feet than the tongue.”

—Zeno

Stay humble

“Work hard in silence; let your success make the noise.”

– Frank Ocean

On a final note, be present, be conscious as Rumi said: “Silence is the language of God, all else is poor translation.”

 

Artwork from Chris Levine 

Cultivate resilience which is a formula for happiness! – Positive Vibes Series

You can be isolated, knocked down, lose your reputation or your business, your lover may call it a day, well many things can go wrong, and consequently, you want to crawl under a rock and stay there forever! The truth is that heartbreaks, sufferings, and pain are real and part of life. By acknowledging this fact, you realize that quitting or withdrawing to a dark abyss is not an option unless you want to be part of the extinction club’s honorary member.

Kathrin Federer
Kathrin Federer

Human history proves that positive adaptation, better known as resilience, is part of our survival regardless of our different predispositions or vulnerabilities. We dare to learn and face dire circumstances, pick up the pieces, and triumph. While traumatic experiences shape our resilience, the good news is that this quality can be cultivated.

“Everyone faces up more bravely to a thing for which he has long prepared himself, sufferings, even being withstood if they have been trained for in advance.” – Seneca

What Seneca refers to is your ability to intervene and forge your resilience by conforming to Stoic philosophy. The school of thought encourages thoughtful analysis into the dark web of your fears and agonies by distinguishing between what you can control and what you don’t have control over, even more between the reality and our perception of the situation.

Oleg Shupliak
Oleg Shupliak

All this considered, whether you are currently experiencing difficult times or have undergone one, whether you are fearful of what the future has in store, employing a stoic strategy helps you cope with the challenges. Begin with picturing the worst that can happen and trust that you are capable of bouncing back from the unthinkable. The idea is preparing yourself to face the unknown and what could go wrong, and the goal is not about being less fearful but building courage. Tapping into your inner strength and to you emplace systems to build up your resilience.

Initially, reflect on your life vision, the kind of life you want to lead, where you want to be in 3 or 5 years, what is the purpose of your existence. Next, write down the significant past experiences that have shaped your emotions to understand where you are in life. For both exercises, go to self-authoring.com and use their online writing programs to explore your past, present, future by gaining a deep understanding of yourself.

Subsequently, consider exerting the following practical efforts recommended by experts in your life strategy and increase your capacity to recover from difficulties:

  • Develop healthy eating habits and regular exercise to strengthen your overall health and increase the chances of better and faster recovery from injuries or sickness.
  • Practice forgiveness – Nelson Mandela said: “When I walked out of the gate, I knew that I was still in prison if I continued to hate these people.” Forgiveness is a necessary attitude to build resilience and not an alternative.
  • Know that there is no guarantee in life (the only guarantee is that we are mortals).
  • Invest in people and relationships that are supportive and encourage you to get through hard times.
  • Commit to routines – establish priorities and stay with it even when things are out of control. For instance, mapping your day, being aware of the cost of the wasted time, performing tasks that are integral to your goals will weed out the act of procrastination. As your actions become your habits, you can restrain impulses and become less reliant on motivation and take responsibility to move forward. “Foolish are those who…have no aim to which they can direct every impulse and, indeed, every thought.” – Marcus Aurelius.
  • Have back up plans
  • Refrain from putting all your eggs in one basket
  • Transform your resentment to energy and channel it towards your goals

 

 

 

Featured image by Fernanda Suarez 

Create a Life of Significance to Achieve Goals

“The desire for a feeling of importance is one of the chief distinguishing differences between mankind and the animals”.

Living a meaningful life is a duty, not a choice. As humans, we have the power to live a life that matters. Our ability to cooperate empowers us to act with a purpose. This collective quality goes hand in hand with the desire to be important and experience life beyond oneself. Equally, it is the emotional trigger to move forward in times of uncertainties and challenges. As the most adaptive species, we can overcome hurdles and build bridges when we are on edge. Our flexibility and consciousness of acting towards a common goal are what make us human.

Leo Caillard
Leo Caillard

Still, there are times that we lose our inner-drive; the ordinary aspects of life blur our visions and our aspirations. These moments may happen when we are overwhelmed with indecisiveness or are faced with stressful situations, so we lack interest or excitement. Our world becomes mundane, and our life visions a far-flung dot in the sky. So how do we get a grip on these unproductive emotions? I’ve learned that purpose, motivation, and momentum are the three powerful forces that will help us tackle difficult times and tasks.

Banksy Art
Banksy Art

Everyone has a purpose in life and a unique talent to give to others. And when we blend this unique talent with service to others, we experience the ecstasy and exultation of own spirit, which is the ultimate goal of all goals.

– Kallam Anji Reddy

Purpose: Know or remember the purpose of your life vision. Some people will state that passion is the key driver; however, not everyone has a fully developed one. Besides, passion is an outlet for emotion and, most notably, not the leading force in our life. University of California Berkeley Professor Morten Hansen surveyed 5,000 employees and managers to understand the make up of star performers. He examined the relationship between passion and purpose and concluded that people perform better when tied to a goal, such as making a substantial contribution to society. He further explains the difference between purpose and passion. The purpose is defined as a sense that you contribute to others that your work has a broader meaning. Passion is the feeling of enthusiasm and excitement you have about your work. He grouped employees into categories, and the shocking finding was that employees who were passionate about their work were poor performers if they were not clear about the purpose. The purpose is the fuel, and a purpose-driven approach, from mission statements, philanthropy to corporate social responsibilities, the root of living a meaningful life.

What does it mean, and what kind of questions lead to define or re-create our purpose? Inquiring into our intentions, examining our beliefs in the steady and positive betterment of humankind, and considering our contribution to collective progress is definitely on top of the checklist that empowers us to experience a meaningful life.

Bansky Art

Bansky Art

“It’s time you realized that you have something in you more powerful and miraculous than the things that affect you and make you dance like a puppet.”

Marcus Aurelius

Motivation: Several theories explain motivation and how it is initiated and guided. Some people are driven by intrinsic and some with extrinsic motivation. However, many people are more inclined to act by the former. They care about satisfaction rather than reward. Essentially, one of the pillars of intrinsic motivation is to align your stimulus with a higher purpose. Since fulfillment developed by self-growth and expanding our horizon to matter and make a difference is in our DNA.

Leo Caillard
Leo Caillard

One way to keep momentum going is to have constantly greater goals.
Michael Korda

Momentum! Go forward, even if you lack the passion, but you have a vision also if it might not clear. Whether you are performing in a contest or a task, momentum expands your mental focus and physical efforts initiating an action. In turn, the act creates results. When you are on a roll, the synergy between the motion and our perceived capabilities enables us to perform with confidence and efficiency. For example, a chore as mundane as ironing a pile of clothes when is 2/3 done, we realize that we have the strength to complete the task. The same perception applies in our professional life. Therefore, our competence, the span of our movement and the continuous efforts will encourage us to perform remarkably.

Leo Caillard
Leo Caillard

The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.
― Barack Obama

Understanding and revisiting our desires and goals, acknowledging our need to feel important, eyeing for the progress, and keep the ball rolling is like personal hygiene; they must be looked after with care and regularly.

Leo Caillard
Leo Caillard

Featured image –  Painting “Nude Youth sitting by the sea” was made by Hippolyte Flandrin, Ingres’ student. Louvre