In a world that rewards loud and vocal, we should respect quiet people’s insight and ability. Contrary to common belief, their silence is not because they are antisocial, instead they want to learn more and develop their minds instead of talking.
Quiet folks talk intently. They weigh their remarks among the noise. Silence helps clarify their thoughts, reflective thinking, and emotions. Quiet people can silently contemplate things that others struggle with.
According to research, silence and solitude provide benefits beyond self-improvement. Silence improves memory, sleeplessness, and inner serenity, Silence improves self-awareness and communication.
I find silent communication fascinating. Imagine a table full of friends eating a nice meal without talking. One night, a couple of friends and someone we had just met dined together. We purposefully chose a topic, sat in silence for a long while to think about it, enjoyed each other’s company (and the food) while contemplating and thinking about our own beliefs and experiences. Later in the evening, we then discussed, questioned, and opened our minds to new things we had learned from each other. Silence seemed natural. We didn’t feel forced to chat, but to think.
Leaders can use silence effectively. Effective leaders know when to be silent after delivering their message and let others speak. In difficult conversations, listening more and talking less may assist in building relationships.
What have I learned from quiet individuals
People think I like to talk. I do. When I am passionate about something, when it is part of my expertise, I do. I love to talk and to discuss. But I have also learned when I need to listen to seek understanding. Do I do it well? I do ok. I am human and continue to get better. I am a work in progress.
- Our minds are always talking to us. In quiet, we hear what must be spoken, not what is being uttered.
- Words have meaning beneath the surface. When someone talks, pausing to think shows a willingness to contemplate, analyze the impacts, and gather thoughts before responding.
- Silence is worth more than chatter. Small chat isn’t for everyone.
- Meetings and social gatherings are full of distractions, but the goal should be to listen to everyone.
There are a few things you should remember about being silent.
Listening, thinking silently, or playing quietly can have unforeseen consequences. Silence opens hearts and minds to other viewpoints. Silence fosters true friendships and deepens relationships.
We should appreciate quiet wisdom. Silence can strengthen connections, understanding, and personal development. Next time you’re talking, realize silence’s power. Listen, watch, and choose your words carefully; true insight frequently lies in the time between words.
Author: Darren Nerland | LinkedIn