First published on on 24/11/2016

Are you one of those people who gives lip service to the benefits of ‘quiet’ practices such as yoga, tai chi and meditation?

Are you known to utter the words “I’ve heard it’s really good for you ….. but I just can’t sit still”? Or maybe you’re someone who does these classes and finds it hard to tone down the voices in your head.

I understand where you’re coming from because I used to be just like you. On the surface I acknowledged that these practices were absolutely beneficial … and then I would add a string of reasons, excuses and thoughts to deflect from the knowledge that I should be doing them.

I was fully enmeshed in ‘being busy’ – a competition that so many of us unconsciously engage with. There wasn’t a second that wasn’t fully scheduled – and in some cases, completely over-booked. Somehow I made it all work and I successfully juggled all the balls I had in the air ….. until I didn’t.

My world imploded in the space of an hour. I went from being a fully-functioning, high-powered, award-winning executive to a wreck on the floor unable to stop crying – within minutes. It took less than 60 minutes for me to no longer be able to exist in the world I had created for myself.

It took almost three years for me to work through all the ‘stuff’ I had in my life and navigate to a place of calm and quiet where I could learn, grow and develop every day. It took almost three years for me to learn that ‘… there’s nothing you need to do, be, have, get, change, practice or learn in order to be happy, loving and whole …’ (Michael Neill).

I was trudging along in my life, operating on auto-pilot and living the life that someone else had programmed me to live through my social conditioning. If questioned, I would have a string of answers as to why I had to live my life that way – there simply was no room for me to think otherwise.

I lived in a state of internal chaos, projecting an outward calm that belied the storm raging underneath the surface. But the problem was, that outward calm I was portraying used up all of my energy reserves. Maintaining that calm façade was constantly draining my energy sources … until there was nothing left.

It was when there was nothing left that I received my ‘wake-up call’, and in a way that was so significant that I had to stop and listen to what I was being told – or die.

What was there to learn from this?

I learned that if I could stop the struggle, take a step back and break all my ‘stuff’ down into small, manageable pieces, then I could slowly and methodically remove that ‘stuff’ from my life.

When I stopped and took the time to sit quietly or to engage in activities that taught me to quieten my mind, I could embrace a whole new aspect of life that was previously closed to me. Western living had taught me that the quiet was dangerous. I was taught to look outside myself for an immediate fix to all my problems. Anything that couldn’t be immediately fixed would be pushed aside and ignored until it no longer ‘existed’.

I learned to sit still and embrace the quiet. By teaching myself to connect to the inner workings of my energy and mind, I reconnected myself with the source of my thoughts. In turn, working with the source of my thoughts gave me the insight I needed to revitalise the way I looked at my life.

So what about now?

Well, now my choices come down to two simple things: I choose to feel better right now, or I choose to feel worse right now. When I base my life on this simple tenet it becomes a lot easier to sit still and listen to the words that the quiet brings.

There are so many ways that the quiet supports me. In particular, the quiet allows me to know that there is nothing to be afraid of in the silence. Silence simply gives me the ability to connect more deeply with who I am – to connect with the real me.

By learning to embrace the quiet, I found the path to my purpose. The quiet allows me to quit the struggle against myself and others … and to acknowledge that my life is fulfilled through the simplicity of living.

Want more info? There are loads of tips and tricks on living and thinking differently in my book ‘Keep It Super Simple’ – you can buy a copy from

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 Bronwen Sciortino is a Simplicity Expert and the author of Keep It Super Simple – Tips from a Recovering Perfectionist. Join the conversation by subscribing to the tribe at; Facebook; Instagram or LinkedIn.