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Dr. Tian Dayton Headshot

FInding Quiet in New York City (and Other High Stress Places)

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I don't accept telephone solicitations. Ever. It's not that I have anything against being generous or kind, I am simply preserving my quite. Other than my children, I don't talk on the phone at night after 8:00 pm. Again, I need to unwind. I make every effort to shut out unnecessary noise, my nervous system needs it living in a fast paced world. I walk everywhere I go and spend part of each day in some green space, for me it's Central Park. Walking where I go makes it easier to incorporate quiet, nature and exercise all into the same lovely package, when I walk with a friend it also becomes social time, easy, fun, chatty social time. There are several excellent studies that have found that walking three or four times or week has the same effect on alleviating depression as taking an antidepressant. Both increase serotonin.

I know that my quiet will not necessarily come by itself, that I need to find it and preserve it in my day. When I am quiet I always wonder what took me so long to get back to it. I am nourished by quiet, I feel my mind begin to unwind, to gain a sense of spaciousness and something of that feeling of goodness just being alive in the moment . When I am quiet nothing that's bothering me seems to matter as much and the things that do matter, like my children's happiness, my own sense of leading a vital and meaningful life.....appreciating my husband and the many blessings in my life start to make themselves known. It's how I know what is actually on my mind,. Unless I am quiet my mind just sort of flits from one little vignette to the next sometimes getting involved in what I am thinking, sometimes not.

Quiet is what increases that reservoir of calm within me from which I can draw strength and nourishment throughout my day. It's like an emotional savings bank, I can only withdraw if there is a large enough balance to withdraw from. So I make daily deposits through remembering that calm doesn't just come by itself, I have to work for it and bank it a little each day. But like savings, it seems to multiply by itself, to pay out dividends, to grow! Not to overwork the metafor, but I have "security". And it's sustainable and renewable and cheap.