Have you ever heard the saying “choose your words wisely”?
Words are so incredibly powerful. What we speak aloud we affirm.
Why then does it seem that so many people are uncomfortable with silence?
Wise Men Speak Because They Have Something To Say; Fools Because They Have To Say Something – Plato
I am sure at one point or another you have noticed that when in social situations, people sometimes use unnecessary words to fill the gaps in conversation. Perhaps we do this to stop feeling awkward or nervous. Or perhaps it’s because we simply don’t know how to practice stillness in our communication.
When we cultivate stillness in communication with others, we create space. In that space there is breath, there is clarity, there is receptivity. When we avoid stillness, we rob ourselves of an opportunity to be in the present moment.
Learning to practice stillness in conversation is a very powerful aspect of self-mastery. When we do this, we gain access to our inner world. Rather than functioning unconsciously, we can actively decipher what we really want to communicate and what we might prefer to keep to ourselves.
As we learn to master this practice, we can be certain that what we say is shared with purpose and conviction. Our words gainer depth and power because we really mean them. This type of communication removes small talk and creates deeper connections; with both our own thoughts and those with whom we choose to speak.
The other great part of mastering stillness in conversation is that we not only create better self-awareness, we also introduce the opportunity to learn from others.
How many pearls of wisdom have you missed in your life because you didn’t stop talking long enough to hear them?
Learning to cultivate stillness also brings with it the gift of becoming a fantastic listener.
When we slow down on the talking and learn to really listen to others, we open up a whole new world of learning. From friends and family to little children, everyone we come across has the ability to teach us something.
If you want to practice being more still in your communication, try this simple technique. In your next conversation, honestly measure much you speak vs how much you listen. Try for a week to listen twice as much as you speak in your interactions. Notice what you learn and what comes up for you.
When Plato said: “Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something” he was providing us with a great insight. And although his words may seem harsh and critical, they certainly do make you think. That’s the whole point of philosophy right?
What do you think Plato meant with this statement? Share your insights in the comments!