Confession time… I talk too much in a lot of situations. That also might be the understatement of the century. I talk to fill a silence, I talk a problem past the point of a solution, I say things that should only be thoughts and I talk when I should be listening. Really it’s a pretty big flaw. I’m working on it okay!
But I’m not the only person out there that talks too much and if it’s like a MAJOR thing you do it’s a hard thing to change. I’ve found that while I might not be able to keep it in check every hour of every day I have learned a thing or two that I CAN actually do. Probably the easiest is to let silence do some of the talking for you. Recently I had an issue with lets just say a difficult person who was pushing and pushing for a response that wasn’t going to get better by giving in to the prompts for more communication. People sometimes use the fact that silence can be hard to achieve to get you to say something you don’t want to. The can ‘bait’ you with insults, anger, rude comments, acting slighted and so, so many other ways.
Even though it’s really hard sometimes I’ve learned that many problems will resolve themselves faster without any input from you. If you refuse to clap back (even if you’re more than entitled to) then the other person has no choice but to fight with themselves. No one says you have to get drawn ito a heated discussion, answer the phone or even let a text get marked as read.
This can in fact have serious side benefits. First and foremost it leaves the other person’s actions just hanging there. That can look pretty ridiculous especially in a text chain and it’s pretty effective in revealing the problems in someone’s behavior. You also avoid getting dragged into it potentially making the solution futher away. If you’re in a situation where you are looking for a solution with a difficult person staying silent pretty much forces them to start talking about that solution at some point. If you stay silent in a social situation where one normally wouldn’t it breaks the social norms just enough that people notice right what came before. You don’t have to do the snotty reply or say you’re offended it’s just implied. This weekend take some time in silence to think about just that. What situations can you think of that might have been made better by saying less.