The Speed Of Silence

20845681_main_zoomI have been on quite the “leave of absence,” on this blog. It’s been more months than I would like to admit.  I love to write, and always saw this blog as my online journal of sorts that friends and family could peek in to.  The problem over the last several months is I have been moving at the speed of silence.  That is the speed where life gets so busy that some things you enjoy and love doing become silent. This is not a healthy speed.  For me, it has been one that pulled one of my favorite creative outlets into the realm of silence.

Years ago, more than I would like to admit, I worked at Postmark Ink.  I learned a lot working there with my aunt, uncle, and cousins who are like parents and siblings to me.  My cousin, Mason, and I used to run the mailing machines.  These old Kirk-Rudy machines are the ones responsible for getting all the “junk mail” to your mailbox.  Just like any business, the more efficient you are at producing the work, the more profitable it is.  So, Mason and I would often compete to see who could produce more mail.

Now picture this, an old Kirk-Rudy mailing machine at optimal speed could put out 7 – 10 thousand pieces of mail an hour. The work crew on these machines consisted of the operators (Mason and I) and the catchers, bundlers and baggers.  The operators controlled the feed and speed.  We would start off slow, gaining a steady rhythm, then gradually speed up. Inevitably, Mason and I would look at each other with grins as this speed started to gain.

We would eventually get to the “speed of silence.” This is where the crew would stop talking to each other so they could focus and try to keep up with the stream of mail flowing.  Mason and I would laugh as we got to this speed where the crew was completely silent. As the operators we could feed the machines and maintain a pace that wasn’t near the speed of silence the rest of the crew was experiencing.

I thought about those days as I knocked the cob webs off this old blog to post again.  My life has been moving at the speed of silence.  I have been able to maintain this speed, but at the cost of creative areas I enjoyed.  I don’t want to get to that speed where the things I enjoy are sacrificed for the sake of managing an unhealthy rhythm. This week I’m look at areas that I need to say “no” to.  Other areas that need to be “silenced.”

We live in a culture where I believe this is very common. I challenge you to take a look at the areas of your life that used to bring life, joy, and happiness, but not have become subject to the speed of silence. We aren’t built to be Hot Wheels cars that run at speeds of silence. Let me know what you see, I’d love to hear your perspective.

Breathe In & Smile Out,

Chris