I’m certain that you’ve heard it said by now – the world is getting noisier.
And it’s true.
We are now able to be connected with hundreds, if not thousands, of people both locally and worldwide. We can watch them, interact with them, listen to them, learn from them, and laugh at them.
Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Vine, Meerkat (or Periscope), Google +, LinkedIn, YouTube, Tumblr, Pinterest and many more. There is a never ending stream of entertainment available to us – we can flick from one thing to another in the blink of an eye, and usually do. Add in “bulk watching” opportunities like Netflix and you’ve got another way of being surrounded by noise for hours on end.
Add to that our work demands – emails, meetings, phone calls, discussions, follow ups and more.
In a world of noise, we’ve lost the ability to enjoy the silence.
We get twitchy.
Silence has changed from golden, to awkward.
And so we fill it with noise.
But the noise will destroy you, if you let it.
The Value of Silence
In economic terms, the sheer scarcity of silence should itself be an indicator for you – it’s value increases daily at the same time the noise around us does.
But in more pragmatic terms, here are a few more reasons to treasure silence.
You see, the problem with noise is that it keeps our attention away.
For as long as we are entertained, we don’t need to confront ourselves. We don’t need to dwell on things that went wrong, things that went right, or bigger picture issues.
The noise prevents us from proper, deep contemplative introspection.
Silence, on the other hand, helps us regain our perspective. Silence allows us to take a breath, close our eyes, and just be.
What’s So Good About That?
Because if you can just be, then you can start to discern where you are off track.
You can see how things are, and how they should be.
You can regain clarity, conviction, purpose.
With so many things to read, watch and do – sometimes we lose sight of ourselves, where we are, the track we are on, and whether things are what we think they ought to be.
The Biggest Problem for Young Lawyers Today
One of the biggest issues that face young lawyers today is that they are simply along for the ride. They are passengers in their own careers.
I believe that this approach is the reason that many young lawyers find themselves in a few years post admission feeling a lack of purpose, a lack of direction and a sense of powerlessness.
If you can, early on, start to enjoy deliberate and conscious silence for a little more each day, then you can begin to reclaim some true knowledge and wisdom about where you want to be, and whether you are on the right track to get there.
Silence will help you in the long run to ensure that you can deal with stress.
Silence allows you to process your losses.
It also allows you to enjoy your wins.
In short: silence is the missing ingredient to many professionals lives, and the catalyst towards greater purpose, direction and inspiration in your legal career.
What to Do?
Starting now – find 5 minutes each day to simply be.
Don’t wander, listen or watch.
Just be. And enjoy the gift of life for what it is, not as a method of entertaining you.