…because “elimination” is not a strong enough word. I can eliminate weeds, but they’ll grow right back. So does noise if you don’t quell it at the source.
Noise is any task you attack in service of a goal you don’t truly care about. It’s the entirety of your phone’s notifications, including incoming calls. Noise is information, blubber, filler words, and meaningless opinions.
I once told a friend I’d have 100,000 Twitter followers in no time. But what is it for? When I asked that question out loud, my friend said I was being dramatic, having achieved a grand 0.38% of my goal.
At first I didn’t understand, but now I think, “Yes! Drama is right!” I want to make the biggest hoopla I can about beheading this pointless effort before it reaches 50% rather than 0.38%. The drama is not for the people – it is for me. To shock myself into action, make the importance of the stance I’m taking crystal-clear, if only in the mirror.
Noise is the greatest disease of our time. We can’t afford to approach it willy-nilly. Slap some balm on the symptoms, “Oh, that should do.” No. It won’t. Noise is a monster. It will eat us alive.
I don’t want to live a slightly less noisy life. I want to live a quiet life. I want to do what Neville did: Cut the head off the snake. Kill the horcrux once and for all.
I’ll never forget one scene towards the end of the first season of Game of Thrones. In one instant, one slice of a sword, one beheading, the show went from period drama to power struggle of the ages, from your usual plotting to a twisted war among the most inhumane humans you’ve ever seen – and nothing was off limits. I dreamed about it. I can still see the scene clearly months later.
The momentous, unrelenting swing of that blade – that’s the kind of force with which we must quench noise from our lives – and if the kind of shock we feel at a beloved character’s surprise decapitation is what it takes for us to conjure that force, so be it.
If you don’t decapitate noise at every source you can find, it will keep creeping back into your life, forever undermining you from beneath. Don’t let it. Be the Queen of Hearts when you must, even if it means yelling “Off with its head!” – or grabbing the sword yourself.