We all want to express ourselves. We consider it a right and a necessary form of behavior to speak up and verbalize what’s on our mind. And yes, for all of us, to talk for the purpose of venting, informing or simply throwing a joke is a need. The desire to share our thoughts is natural. There’s nothing wrong with that.
But when we speak up, it’s important to consider that the timing of when to speak up and when not to saying anything is essential in making our point effectively and also not looking stupid. We need to learn to incubate our thoughts, allow our minds to process further what we’re about to say and not just irresponsibly exercise the right to express ourselves. Every word we say can have a tangible consequence, good or bad, thus we ought to be more careful.
Our words influences people. It can hurt or build up. It can encourage or discourage. It can solve a situation or cause a problem. And the difference sometimes could simply be on the timing. Is today or this very moment the right time to speak about something? The term “too soon” for jokes and comments that maybe better delayed, may as well require permanent silence, because if a comment or idea would just lead to hurting people then we might as well avoid saying it…forever.
Spoken words, like time, are irreversible. Once time passes, it’s gone forever. Once we utter words, it’s casted into the universe with our consciousness forever influenced by it.
Like a crucial business decision or an important test question, the move and answer to the question “Is it time to speak?” brings a weight of responsibility. Our integrity, our reputation, our well being and relationships are influenced by the words we speak. Our own personal language – words and concrete ideas that form our overall unique verbal persona, has a direct relationship with what we attract in our lives.
I never regretted the time when I took more time to simmer my ideas and let it sink. Sometimes, we just need to shut up a bit longer and allow ourselves the privilege to understand the implication of what we’re about to say. Is it necessary to confront now? Is it crucial to correct the person now? Is it worth it to throw this joke now?
Mark Twain once said, “It is better to keep your mouth closes and let people think you are a fool than open it and remove all doubt.” Napoleon Hill, famous for advocating the science of possibility thinking says that we need to “Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another.
Both suggestions and recommendation on what we say and how we speak involves carefully weighing the impact of our spoken words. Sometimes, choosing the path of silence maybe the best way to respond to some circumstances.
Our opinions, our thoughts and the opportunity to express them with an audience satisfy our need for validation. But when it comes to what we say, when we say it is equally crucial and could work against us if we do not properly discern the right moment to speak up.
Dr. Albert Mehrabian, author of the book Silent Messages, in his study on nonverbal communications concluded that only 7% of our message is conveyed through words. He says that the 38% are through certain vocal elements and 55% through nonverbal elements. This means that up to 93% of what we really mean to say is conveyed through other means aside from our words.
As they say “timing is everything” and even the noblest idea can seem foolish when uttered in a bad timing.
It is never a bad idea to stay silent a little longer when it comes to speaking words until you find the right timing.