What’s your moment of Shush? That time when all feels quiet, calm and still. Perhaps you can breathe a little better. Or maybe you forget about the crazy day ahead and instead feel completely present in the moment you are in. It’s not easy and it doesn’t always come naturally, but it’s possible — and can be incredibly rewarding. We asked six TueNight contributors and friends to share some of their own Zen-esque experiences.
1. The Paintbox: “I’m a set designer, and sometimes I get up really early and go to the theater to paint. I get hours of complete silence. Nobody comes in until at least eight a.m. or later, and by that time I have gone home to wake my kids up. Getting up in the middle of the night has become my best source of privacy. #BenefitofNightSweats.” – Molly Eness
2. The Daily Pause: “After the hideous alarm clock goes off (and the subsequent snooze alert 10 minutes later), I try not to bolt from bed. Instead, I take a few minutes to breathe and calmly assess the day ahead of me. And when I remember, I pause for a moment of gratitude for all of the good things in my life.” – Suzanne Rust
3. Mornings & the Pups: “Most mornings, I walk my dogs to the end of the pier by my apartment and sit for a few minutes, inhale/exhale and talk to the universe. With every breath, I imagine how we are all connected by feeling the air on my face, hearing the city sounds and knowing the dogs are at my feet. I feel the most gratitude for life and learning. This is my favorite way to start the day.” – Teresa Misagal
4. The 6-Second Path: “I am usually the first person to arrive in my art studio building each morning. As I enter my space, I make a slightly circuitous route through my studio, turning on one overhead light, then the next, then the light at my desk where I place my bag down each day. In that 6-second path, I scan the room, assess what projects are in what state, almost like a preview of what the day holds, all of it soundtracked by my footsteps and the pulling of chain lights, the buzz of recently engaged fluorescents.” – Mac Premo
5. A Walk to Starbucks: “The reason I go to Starbucks every afternoon is for that three blocks of quiet that are just for me. I take a deep breath and enjoy the 15 minutes of solitude. I walk the same route. I order the same drink. I say “hello” to the same barista. It’s the sameness of the routine that allows me to relax and not “think.” I try to clear my head and focus on the smell of the coffee, or the leaves changing colors, and struggle not to use the moment to make mental lists of the things I need to do. Because all of these things, I remind myself, will be waiting for me in 15 minutes when I unlock my front door, walk back in my apartment, slip off my shoes, set down my phone and keys, and get back to work.” – Lindsay Tabsh
6. Goodnight Moon: “I have a routine when I put my son Sidney to sleep. I read him one or two stories, then lay next to him while he falls asleep. Sometimes he falls asleep during the story and other times it can take up to 15 minutes. During that time, I’ll close my eyes and meditate. I focus on my breath and try to let go of all the thoughts, tasks and worries that usually run through my head. I am no longer even waiting for Sidney to fall asleep; rather, I’m just being present in the moment. Besides being a tender moment that I get to share with my child, it’s also a way for me to get a little mediation practice in my day. But I won’t lie — sometimes I end up passing out right next to him.” – Manoo Halati
What’s your moment of shush? Tell us in the comments!