Practicing Creative Silence and Solitude 

by Michael Corthell

The stark emotion of loneliness expresses the agony of being alone, while the joy of solitude expresses the glory of positive creativity.

Like me, I'm sure that it is hard for you to just sit still—not only sit still, but to do it in complete silence. Most people's natural tendency is to surround themselves with noise as distraction—sometimes just for the company.

For any of us to make use of our creative intelligence—that is to be open to the knowledge and wisdom of the Infinite Intelligence, we must have the ability and capacity for the constructive use of solitude and silence. We must overcome the fear of being alone and silent within our immediate environment.

Creativity is born in solitude. With purposeful quietness, you can hear your own thoughts and God's. You can then find the answers within yourself, and you can actively focus and act on them.

There are many ways to find creative solitude. Let's look:

Look at being creative first thing in the morning. Before doing anything else make time for quiet focused reflection. This method really sets the day up for most people. It will make you feel that CREATING is your job, not answering emails or reading the news. Creating is everyone's job. 

Do 'nothing'. Make it a habit of welcoming time away from being creative. This is can be a serious life-recharging time where your only responsibility is to just be. Doing 'nothing' has a way of synthesizing what is really important in your life and in your work. Doing 'nothing' in silence will quite possibly inspire you beyond measure. When you do come back to work you will be much better equipped to sift through all the non-essential things, and then focus on the things you most want to express creatively.

Retreat! Take some time to carve out little retreats for yourself. You will get some good thinking and re-charge time in. These little retreats are more focused and you can concentrate on thinking about creative problems that you've been putting off. That is a good reason to intentionally 'carve out' time. You need to make room for your creative soul.

Work it out! A leisurely walk or the cardio madness of a marathon. Any level of exercise can be a great space for silent solitude. And it's a great use of time, 'killing two birds with one stone.' so to speak.

Shower yourself with silence and solitude. Yes, when you take a shower you can get all soapy warm and clean but you can also chill-out and think. It's another 'two-for-one' deal. In fact I know of one famous writer who outlined a best selling novel during one 20 minute shower. The story with all its characters seemed to flow right through the shower-head. 

Silence is a necessary part of a well-lived life. Some quiet solitude ,as part of a productive day, not only calms us down and brings us peace, but it also improves our health overall. Challenge yourself to find new and creative ways to squeeze more silence out of your well-lived and happy life.

I Walk the Earth
by John Francis

For almost three decades, John Francis has been a planet-walker, traveling the globe by foot and sail with a message of environmental respect and responsibility (for 17 of those years without speaking). A funny, thoughtful talk with occasional banjo. He is a HAPPY man.