Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. Elisabeth Kubler-Ross
How many times have you wished silence from a person sitting opposite you or in a meeting room ?
How many times have you been in an awkward moment when you realized that you should have kept silent after spitting out words in anger?
In Silence it is important to listen and it is a communication skill in that one needs to know when not to talk or interrupt.
- In sales pitches, the inability to remain silent can cost the deal and many times the client relationship. Have you and your team members who are presenting to the client given an opportunity to the client to speak? Have you listened what they need? A good sales person listens far more than they talk.
- You call on your friend to share a difficulty that you are going through. When you meet this friend, he starts talking about his day and how he would have handled or has handled difficulties in his life. He has barely heard you, leave alone listen. You sit there listening to his nonstop babble, when all you wanted him to do was listen – Listen silently without interruptions or judgment. Many times in life all we need is to vent out what we are going through and a person to listen. There is a time for silence, time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny. And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it’s all over.
- Most of us have met this person who endlessly brags about their deal striking ability or the number of places they have been or the people whom they have met. A lot of this happens without context and some of these nonstop banter may endanger the privy of confidential data.
- Being extremely negative about competition just to get your company to win the bid. Many times these conversations take place over a drink or dinner and damages the reputation of the company and the person.
- Dropping names just to show how influential you are.
There is a time and place for everything and silence in all the above situations is appropriate and necessary. It is better to use the art of silence rather than blurting out on an impulse, just to say something.
Nothing strengthens authority so much as silence – Leonardo Da Vinci
Is Silence good or warranted in all situations ? No, absolutely not.
- Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. You are the lonely one who can be the lead in your life.
- Never be silent whenever and wherever human beings endure suffering, violence in any form and humiliation. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented and being neutral and silent is not the solution. The ultimate tragedy is not the oppression and cruelty by the bad people but the silence over that by the good people. Martin Luther King Jr.
- Never be silent when you are aware about acts of wrong doing within a company or in any other day-to-day situations.
- Never be silent in situations where silence may mean acceptance or consent or grant of approval.
- Do not be silent in the face of misunderstandings.
Silence is about mastering the art of timing. During public speaking, silence is good for the audience to think, for you to create emphasis around a new idea that you may be presenting. Even on Social Media, you need to know that not everything needs to be shared and there is no necessity to have an opinion on every single matter or a status update on whether you are thinking, swimming, having dinner or wish to talk or doing many other things. If you need to express all of that, best to journal it or talk to yourself.
Silence is one of the great arts of communication as long as you know when and where.
It is tact that is golden, not silence. Samuel Butler
Which word or set of words will you choose to use every time you speak?
Do you need to speak every time you have an urge to say something?
Please refer my blog post on Power Of Listening – Shut Up and Listen Will Ya ?
Images : Lalita Raman