Noise can become background music accompaning us throughout our daily routine. However, it has been shown that noise activates our nervous system and increases the level of stress. In fact, several studies carried out nearby some major European airports have shown that children who live near these areas have an highest blood pressure. For adults, the problem is even more serious because there is a higher incidence of heart diseases and hypertension.
These results should not surprise us by the moment noise can increase cortisol levels, and when these remain high over time end up causing imbalances in the immune system and metabolism. In fact, if you think about it, you will notice that moving from a noisy environment to a quiet one, your body relaxes automatically, as if tension vanished.
Unfortunately, few people are aware of the importance of silence in our lives. Silence produces some very positive changes.
1. It helps you connect with your more profound “self”. Sit in a quiet place just to enjoy silence, it allows us to connect with our more profound “self”. This state of calm invites us to look within ourselves, so we end up discovering always new things. In fact, silence teaches us to feel good about ourselves, to feel at ease doing nothing, enjoying our own company. Something that very few people can do.
2. It allows you to pay more attention to details. Being calm and relaxed helps us develop attention and concentration. In fact, it allows to keep us attentive to detail, expanding greatly our perception of the surrounding world. When we are in a noisy environment our senses are limited, but when we’re in a silent place our perception expands.
3. It teaches you to develop gratitude. Tranquility helps us to see life from different perspectives. When we are alone with our thoughts, in total peace of mind, we begin to glimpse the thousand and one reasons for which be thankful. The simple fact of being here is a good reason to feel grateful.
4. It motivates you to embrace simplicity. When we are silent we appreciate the details we had not noticed before. In those moments we realize that to be happy and have a full life, we don’t need many things, but just to learn enjoy what we have. Silence, being alone with yourself, will teach you the value of simplicity in life.
5. It lets you know what you really want. The hustle and bustle of everyday life not only makes fragile and superficial the relationships we have with others, but also the relationship with ourselves. When we are surrounded by noise we don’t have time to ask ourselves what we really want. On the contrary, silence encourages introspection and leads us to ask ourselves what we really want and where we are going.
6. It helps you relax. The first times you sit alone in silence, doing nothing, you will feel very strange and probably you won’t resist more than five minutes. It’is due to the fact that you’re accustomed to the excess of stimuli. But if you resist, you will notice how silence helps you relax, not only mentally, but even physically.
7. It gives you a lesson in courage. Many people think that courage consist in facing fear, but in fact, value lies in dealing with our own internal fears. Remaining alone in silence you will discover fears inside yourself, which are usually covered by noise. Then you’ll notice that many of these fears are meaningless, and you will grow as a person.
Münzel, T. et. Al. (2014) Cardiovascular effects of environmental noise exposure. European Heart Journal; 829-836.
Hansell, A. et. Al. (2013) Aircraft noise and cardiovascular disease near Heathrow airport in London: small area study. BMJ; 347.
Hygge, S. et. Al. (2000) The Munich Airport noise study: Effects of chronic aircraft noise on children’s perception and cognition. InterNoise; 27-30.
7 ways in which silence can change your lifeJennifer Delgado