Tag Archive | Soundtrack

Introverted Observations

Tis the Season

Tis the season coming up quickly for proms, and graduations and for moving into adulthood.

It’s a time of being with friends and family in a whole new way.

The parameters have opened up, and many are just not certain what is next. It’s a rite of passage I suppose.

The anxiety. The uncertainty. The clueless-ness.

I’ve been to several events in the past couple of months. Band concerts, chorus concerts, and the like.

The difference is that for two of my grand children, these events carried the distinct designation of “Last”.

The culmination of 13 years of schooling. 13 years of always knowing (mostly) what comes next.

A New Designation

Along with the “Last” designation, comes a new one as well. “First”.

The “First” time of being really responsible, entirely, (mostly) for what comes next.

But that topic is for another time.

Here I wanted to share what I’ve observed during these “Last” times.

I’ll share it here with just a snippet of what I wrote in my journal.

Journal Entry

Being so much of an introvert is OK, except for at those over the top social events. You know, the ones that are supposed to elicit great shows of emotions.

When you are an introvert, not so many people flock to your good bye. Not so many are devastated by your departure.

Your family celebrates you, and at the same time, they mourn your advancement into a new place of life, away from them … but you? You kind of fade into it. Quietly dismissing yourself, and making your way back to the safety zone that you have created for yourself.

It is a sad thing perhaps, but maybe hard to remember, at that moment, that it is a world you have created for yourself. A safe place.

Why Was it Visible?

I noticed this occurrence taking place in quiet corners in more than one school district. In more than one cafeteria, and at more than one event.

Those who were more extroverted, and were able to wear their emotions on their sleeves for all to see.

Those who were more introverted, put on a brave front, appearing to be OK, yet their smiles, never really reached their eyes.

Then, sadly, oh so sadly, I saw (felt) those who simply gave up trying to put on the act, not having the energy to fake it even one more time.

The extroverts, wondering why they are so emotional.

The introverts wondering if they could attempt to fit in just one more time.

The others, biding their time until they could escape to their own comfortable nests.

I saw this. I knew this. I felt this. Again.

It took me until I was full grown adult to realize that I was just wired that way. Quieter.

The noisy, raucous kid me, was all an act. A protection racket for the part of me that I saw as flawed

My quiet side has kept me sane, but at times it has also kept me alone.

What to Do?

The sadness I felt back then, can still be accessed by me, but it does not have to be. It no longer rules my life.

And still, when confronted by this, when I see this in my vision, when I feel this in my soul, when I see the struggle going on in front of me, I do not know what to do.

Telling them that everything will be OK, will not make it so. Only life itself, lived on one day at a time, can do that.

But the quiet part of me still seeks another answer. One that can help the loneliness subside, or at least to feel tolerable. Sooner rather than later.

Until then, if you see yourself in this narrative, please know;

You are wired a different way. A special way.


You are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Psalms 139:14

The Down Side of Quiet

If you have been visiting here for long, you may know that one of my favorite topics is Quietude. Quiet. A little time for gathering the thoughts.

Even though this article is about noise, silence was mentioned as well. I thought this author had some interesting perspectives, pro and con.

I enjoyed the pros, of course.

I hope you enjoy reading it too.

Noise Cancelling: The Good and The Bad

Noise cancelling has it’s benefits and draw backs. We have to make sure we tune out the right things so we can best hear God’s voice.

Noise Cancelling
I travel a good bit these days, and spend a decent amount of time on airplanes.  Over the years, people have become more and more comfortable listening to anything and everything to block out the noise of the airplane, announcements being made, or crying babies.  Companies (BOSE, Beats, etc) have become better at creating headphones that can block out all noise around you so you only hear what you decide to listen to. And this doesn’t just apply to airplanes. People use these to focus at work or simply walk around outside.

People spend a lot of money on these headphones to accomplish one simple goal: block out distractions and noise. We want to have control over what we listen to or don’t listen to.

The Downside to Noise Cancelling

Airplanes:  If you can’t hear anything that means you cant hear any important announcements (safety, or emergency notifications).

Jogging/Running:  If you are completely blocked out from noise, a car could honk its horn at you, or someone could try and warn you about something around you, and you may not hear the warning signals.

The Lesson

Sometimes we decide that we know better than God does about what we should be listening to.  God gives us warning signs or direction through many different mediums throughout our lives.  If we don’t allow God to speak to us through a specific channel we are only hurting ourselves.  Using an extreme example, if you decide to block yourself off from anyone who isn’t a Christian in an effort to protect yourself and not be tempted, you are not abiding by God’s greatest commandment to “Go out and made disciples” (Matthew 28:19-20)  While we have protected ourselves from the “noise” around us, we have limited God’s ability to work through us.

Related Post: God is Calling Us All to Listen

I would encourage you to ask God to speak to you. Start to listen to His voice everywhere you go.  God can speak through anyone or anything.  Don’t block Him out.

The Positive About Noise Cancelling

With that said, there are times that silence is important and being able to cancel out distractions can be helpful.

Basketball Players:  If you’ve ever watched a Duke basketball home game, the fans do everything in their power to distract the other team and make them mess up or miss a shot.  Players on the floor have to find a way to block it out and perform to help their team.

Football Huddles:  Or think about a football team in a huddle.  The purpose of the huddle is to block out noise and allow everyone to understand the next play’s plan.

Airplanes:  Sticking with this analogy from before, think about the pilots of the airplane.  They can’t be distracted by the passengers.  Their job with all the noise going on around them is to get everyone to the destination safely.  They actually wear headphones to talk with each other and block out the actual noise around them.

The Lesson:

Christianity is similar in that there are times you need to clearly hear God’s voice and not be distracted by the enemy who is doing everything in his power to knock you off track.  I grew up with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) so I understood at a young age how the smallest of distractions could affect me.  I had to learn how to block them out.

When I want to hear from God, I need silence or an environment where God is welcome (worship, church, etc).  God doesn’t need complete silence to be able to speak to you, but sometimes you need complete silence to listen.

In those times, cancelling out your surrounding is a good idea.  After getting alone away from distractions, though, we should come back to full awareness of our surroundings so we can see and hear God move. Ultimately, it’s about doing what’s needed to be able to hear from God. We block out the distractions but lean in to listen to Him however, whenever, and wherever He chooses to speak to us.

So noise cancelling can be both good and bad. In the end, don’t block out God or limit His ability to use you or speak to you by attempting to block out others.

Written by Charles Hamrick

I am very simply a follower of Christ.  While here, I enjoy the passions that God has given me that include my family, friends, church, sports (specializing in golf), traveling and simply experiencing God’s creation to the fullest.  I additionally have a passion for writing and sharing what God is speaking to me on a constant basis.  I love the fact that our creator chooses to use the least of us to communicate His heart to others.

Quiet Time Musings

This week has been a breakthrough week in my mind.

Making a quality decision  to not ignore quiet time, and to put that time to better use.

By putting it to better use in this instance means to to use that time to create my own thoughts, consider my own beliefs, understand what things I think and why.

I can always find time to read someone elses words. I’m not saying that that is wrong, certainly not, because it does help to create questions for further thinking in my mind. I’m only saying that I need to find out what I, myself think about things.

One of my favorite/best ways to get my thinking to get moving, is to read scripture. It creates many questions, and answers many as well.

The place I landed in my thinking was about space. Quiet space. Loud space. Crampy space. Spacious space.

I then looked up my favorite verses about space, and realized yet again, why I love living where I live.

I grew up in a larger city forty miles north of here. Houses. Streets. Voices. Traffic.

White houses out my window in rows. Utility poles breaking every small stretch of sky.

Someone elses noise always, always, always filling my head.

Some people, and their different personalities, thrive on just such environments. I however did not. I always wanted to be out. Some place green. Some place that I didn’t feel smothered.

My Grampas’ house was like that, but as a child, not very accessible.

Psalm 31:8b (ESV) You have set my feet in a broad place.

Then we moved here. My children called it Podunk. It isn’t really. Podunk, to me, would be much further than the few miles we travel from here to get to town.

Psalm 18:19 (ESV) He brought me out into a broad place; he rescued  me, because he delighted in me.

It is close enough to be close, and far enough to be far. Away from the hum of the city.

I knew I always wanted to be where I didn’t see only rows of white houses, and poles scratching at the sky. I just did not know how much. Nowadays, a trip to town quickly makes me want to return home.

It was very difficult to find quiet space back then, and it often involved a camping trip, or a car ride to a empty country road. Not impossible, but often difficult.

I am positive that living here, has saved my sanity. I have now spent almost exactly half of my life here; and I’m grateful. I am grateful for the overstuffed chair, that sits by the window, and looks out over a really broad space.

2 Corinthians 9:15 (ESV) Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

Maybe to you this does not sound like a gift; Your personality prefers the hum of activity.

Psalms 139:13 -14a For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.

(He knows how He made you – He will show you another way)
Maybe you are here just wondering when your gift will arrive; You’ve been waiting and praying.

Matthew 6:8…. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

(Hang on!)

Questions to consider;

  • Does my quiet time require total silence, or maybe some music or other ambient noise?
  • Do I require quiet EVERY day? Every week? More than once a day?
  • Does my quiet time involve time together, alone, with someone else?
  • Does it contain devotions? Book reading? Bible reading? Audio reading? A quiet video? Or just staring out the window – at my street, or at my space?
  • Does my quiet time release me from the stress and pressure of the daily grind?

Please feel free to leave a response in the comments. I’d love to hear from you!

 

⇓ Click Here ⇓

Enjoy some quiet. It’s Under the Hill.

29jan2017

 

 

 

 

 

Quietude – Gray Days – Deja Vu

About a year ago, I posted this video.  The days were gray.

The days are gray now as well. This year the gray days are prolonged.

Just enough teasing sunshine in between to make the gray days even more miserable.

If you let them.

I’ve found though, that joy and peace can be found in those days, regardless.

It is by choice. Sometimes over and over.

So it is my hope that this little video will help you find some joy and even peace in your day.

Just remember, Spring IS on the way.

But wait! Before you go – What is it that makes your Gray Days bearable? A good book? A cup of  something warm? A snugly blanket? A gathering of friends? What?

Use the comment section to let us know.

A Bump in the Road

This week heavily on my mind, is the fact that I have made some decisions, or a least I thought I made some decisions.

Decisions that pertain to the things I want to share, here, and anywhere else I’d like to share it.

I find myself out here again, on a bumpy road. Trying to traverse the landscape with a minimum of bumpage. My husband is mortified when I make up words, but bumpage is a good one right? I’m positive you know what I mean.

You’re moving right along, everything lined up straight, and BAM! A cloud of confusion, or a bank of brain fog, too many ideas to count all descend on you at once, or none at all. It’s a moment when you realize that the decision(s) you made made not be as clear as you thought they were. Without a clear purpose, without a clear focus, moving forward is depressingly difficult.

I’m not sure what I can figure it all out here, but allow me to use this space to look back and see how I got here, so that I can figure out, again, which way to go to get around these bumps.

My husband and I discuss often, the fact that in the age we live in, we have taught our children WHAT to think, and not HOW to think. When I was raised, I have no clear recollection of either. I remember in school, finishing my work, and then wandering around the classroom, disturbing the other kids. Instead of training me to THINK of something else to do, I would get whatever the punishment of the day was, and a lot of cross words about how I would never amount to much.

So suffice to say, it is no big surprise that the “Soundtrack of my life” was full of confusion and fog and a cacophony of noises.  When you receive these messages day in and day out, you begin to believe them

I remember always thinking, “I’m going to do this.” I’m going to do that.” All the while doing nothing because I did not know how to sort those thoughts out, or how to put them all together to make sense.

Several years back, every time I heard “I’m going to do this.” in my head, then right after that, I would hear “just stop talking about it and do it.” I began to discern the difference between saying and doing. It sounds simple enough, but let’s face it, when you weren’t taught to think, it is a difficult task.

Sorting those things out fell into a few different categories;

  • What people had said to/about me
    • What I thought about me
  • What people had done to me
    • What I thought because people did what people do
  • Is it possible to change these things?
  • Finally, what did God think of me?
    • How was I created by Him to be?

As you might imagine, these things took some doing to over come. It took a great deal of introspection, and internal dialogue. Separating the negative dialogue from the positive. Changing that “Soundtrack” to something that I could really live with, and then, begin to help others to walk the same way.

It is something that needs to be revisited from time to time. I’m fairly certain that it’s that time again for me.

Bumps in the road are inevitable.

How we navigate them determines our success or failure.

If you have read this far, then I imagine that this is something that plagues your mind as well.

Might I suggest, that you take just a few moments for yourself. To be quiet. To begin to sort all that has been stored inside of you for so long? I know that my “Quietude” lately has been must less than what I require. So it is time to begin again.

Quieting the heart that beats inside of us, is the best place to start.

I’ve left a video here to get you started.

I would love to hear your comments, and any other ideas that have helped you to become clear and focused. We’ll have some here on this blog, and help each other out.

How about it? You in?

 

 

Floating Near the Surface

In my previous post, I used this statistic; The average person in Western society is bombarded by 35-48 thought fragments  per minute. Per minute folks!

It is no wonder that our children (and our adults!) can’t concentrate. There is so much “noise” all the time – there is no room to hear our true voice, the one that lives inside of us.

And, after hearing all the noise that is provided to us, sorting out the truth is just that much more difficult. Our moral compasses have a difficult time defining true north.

This is why I advocate for quiet time. Just some time, a little, or a lot, depending on your personality and your circumstances.

Taking some time to turn off the noise, and do a deep dive into that really makes us who we are.

I find that without that time of quiescence, I find myself floating near the surface of truth, but not really connecting to it.

The quiet helps me to separate the truth from the noise.

Once I sort that out, I can burst through the surface, and really begin to connect with my dreams, my aspirations, and my passions.

In short, I can be who I was created to be.

In Mark 6:31 Jesus says this; “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat.
My goal is to do that for a little while each day, and longer when it is possible.
How about you? Have you connected with your inner life? Have you determined your dreams, and aspirations, and passions? Do you know what you’ve been created for?
I challenge you to find out. A little or a lot.
Are you up for it?

 

Pavlov’s Dog – Quietude

If you’re looking for content, then this probably isn’t the blog post you want to watch.

However, if you are looking for a place to get a moments rest so that you can continue your day, then you re in the right spot.

Let me tell you why.

Dictionary.com puts it this way;

Pavlov’s Dogs  [(pav-lawfs, pav-lawvz)]

The dogs used in conditioned response experiments by a Russian scientist of the late nineteenth century, Ivan Pavlov.  In these experiments, Pavlov sounded a bell while presenting                                                                food to a dog, thereby stimulating the natural flow of saliva in              the dog’s mouth. After the procedure was repeated several times,   the dog would salivate at the sound of the bell, even when no food                                       was presented.

Now, you’re not a dog, and I don’t want to make you salivate, but as my daughter has told me, she has a Pavlovian response to rain/thunder storms. She hears them, she wants to sleep. In the short video in this post, you likely won’t have time to fall asleep, but you will have time to get your mind a little bit of rest.

So go ahead. Close your eyes for a minute, and test the theory.

Let me know in the comments what you think.