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Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus help over 20 million people live meaningful lives with less through their website, books, podcast, and documentary. The Minimalists have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Forbes, TIME, ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, CBC, and NPR.

Tangled Sounds

When the music stops, you remove the earbuds from your ears and carefully wrap the cord around your hand, returning the headphones to your pocket. But when you reach for them hours later, they are a complex puzzle of tangled wire.

This happens nearly nearly every time you extract the cord from your pocket: the thing you put away neatly is now a jumbled mess, leaving you unable to hear the music.

Isn’t this also true for the auditory clutter we experience every day?

We often make room for calm and unencumbered peace. We establish routines for mediation. We create interstitial zones for solace.

Then we shove this serenity in our pockets and go about our busy days as normal. Meetings and phone calls and emails. Glowing screens and interruptions and noise.

Everyday life can get in the way of tranquility, and when we reach into the metaphorical pockets of our head, we find only a mind disquieted by nonstop thoughts, leaving us unable to hear the beautiful euphony of silence.

We needn’t give up, though.

With our headphones, we simply take a moment to untangle the cord when we need them again.

Perhaps the same can be accomplished with quiet. When we’re overwhelmed by the clamor of our day-to-day routine, we can take a moment to untangle our mind from the noise.

Sit.
Notice.
Breathe in.
Pause.
Breath out.
Let go.
Untangle.

Sure, the chaos is out there, but it can wait. The silence is right here, right now.