Noise, noise everywhere!

noiseHave you ever noticed that there is loud, screechy music playing almost everywhere you go these days?  There’s “top forty” playing in stores, restaurants, hotel lobbies and even at the dentist’s office.  There’s now even loud, screechy music playing when you pump gas! Don’t misunderstand me, I love music, in the right context, when I can actually hear the words and not just a “tinny” rendition of what the song should sound like.

Okay, you call me old and grumpy but I don’t think so!  Honestly, why do we need to listen to music 24/7 and when did retailers and service oriented businesses all agree that playing loud, screechy music makes consumers buy more?  Maybe I am missing something. I simply cannot understand why our human species, which is already agitated and over-stimulated to the max, is not rebelling against this constant and never-ending noise.

Well actually I do understand, a little bit.  You see, my family rolls their eyes at me every time I proclaim in some public place, “Do we really need this loud and screechy noise right now?”  Their response (after the eye rolls) is usually, “Thanks Mom, I didn’t notice until you mentioned it.”

That is pretty much it in a nutshell. Most of us don’t notice that we are swimming in noise.  Our nervous systems are jacked to the max because of the constant stimulation and supposed entertainment but most of us don’t notice because it has become such the norm in our culture.

I am sorry to break the news to you but there is noise, noise everywhere. You can protect yourself from the insanity by finding silence when you are able to control the volume, i.e. your car, your office, and your house. There is always that wonderfully joyful noise of nature if you are lucky enough to live close to some trees and grass.  The kind of unfortunate result of this awareness is that once you start getting used to silence you will begin to notice the noise that invades our lives everywhere.

I am sure that some of you are rolling your eyes just like my kids do. That is okay with me.  I know that some people really like to fill their already busy minds with more busyness.  As for me, I’ll take quiet any day of the week.  I would love to hear your thoughts.

Comments 16

  1. I agree Cara! That is why I love the mostly silent yoga at verge! Once you awaken to the joy of silence you crave it – I think those that are not aware of that joy crave the noise as it deafens the constant chatter of the mind. I no longer fill my days with tv, novels and radio and instead bask in all that silence has to offer in each moment. Who would have thought that turning it all off would be so great!

    1. So true Amy. Thanks for your comment. It took me a good year to wean myself off the habitual conditioning of turning on the news in the car. As with everything, it is all a delightful journey.

  2. I drive in quiet these days. No music, no kyw, just breath. Stuck in traffic…I focus on breath. I feel much calmer when I get to my destination. I actually enjoy the peace in quiet.

  3. I echo all of these comments…reading this, I actually have a smirk on my face because as I have grown a little older, I realize I do not like noise that much at all and make it a habit of not turning on the tv or radio as soon as I get home. The quiet is calming after crazy days at work that are so consumed with computers and email (and here I am on my phone). I do try to turn off all of these at some point in the day and just be still.

    1. It is such a simple and obvious practice once we realize how much we bake in noise all day. The consequence, however, is that once we are awake to it, we are awake to it and we notice noise everywhere. Thanks for your comment. Great insights.

  4. We are better off with more rustling leaves and less lawn mowers, more dog barks and less honking horns, more drumming and less Mario Brothers looping theme song… 🙂

  5. Great article Cara. I think that some people fear silence. It’s scary for them to be in a quiet place, so when they get in their car or arrive home, they must turn on their iPod or TV.
    If more of us even spent 10 minutes a day with our thoughts…well…the world would be a different place.

    1. Great point Wendy. I do recognize that fear of silence and space is a very real thing for some people. It can bring up a lot and sometimes we are just not ready for a lot. Thanks for sharing.

  6. I am sitting in an airport right now and there is no place to go where a TV screen or canned Muzak is not assaulting me. Many restaurants and bars have tv’s installed– even the dr,’ office and all that plays on that one are infomercials made by drug companies. I totally agree that this kind of noise assaults our nervous system. It instantly wears me out. Why can’t I just sit in an airport and be able to use my own laptop without hearing some dumb screaming news show? I am an unwilling captive audience to a show I’d never choose to watch, at a volume level that is impossible to escape.

    I was at a new office park type mall recently and they had piped out music, speakers hidden in the bushes. Nothing like getting out of your car and hearing this wierd creepy music playing to a nearly empty parking lot. You know who pipes out music like that? Chernobyl.

    1. Post

      Oh boy, your descriptives are awesome. I feel you! Sometimes if I can’t escape the noise I put on binaural beats. Try The Lost Chord or other beats that entrain with your brain waves. Listening to sounds like these is different than pop music or other stuff. Thanks for sharing.

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