We’ve all been there; we’ve said something we shouldn’t have, we’ve said too much, we’ve spoken over people and not let others speak. Speak less, listen more. It’s hard to do. But if we can learn to talk less we can be better people.
Here’s why should you learn to talk less…
You Will Learn More
As long as you are talking, other people can’t, and, whilst you are talking, you can’t possibly be listening. When you stop talking you give other people the space to speak.
Talk less and become a better listener.
You Will Do More
When we talk about something it can often be a form of procrastination. We talk about doing something and it feels like we’re making progress. However, talking about something is not the same as actually doing the thing.
Talking about the best new workout routine won’t make you any fitter. Talking about your new idea for a business won’t earn you any money. Talking about your book idea, won’t put any words on the page.
We can easily kid ourselves into thinking that talking about something means that we’re making progress, but often it’s not, it’s just procrastination.
Talk less, do more.
You Will Become Powerful
In Robert Greene’s 48 Laws of Power, he highlights the power of purposefully saying less. His fourth law of power says to “Always Say Less Than Necessary“. Leaders throughout history have resisted the urge to speak and used it to their advantage.
Louis XIV was famous for keeping people guessing by always responding with “I shall see”. No one knew what he thought about a subject or what he would do next.
According to Robert Greene, the more you say, the more common you appear. By not speaking, you make people reveal more about themselves. By purposefully saying less, people will listen and interpret your every word more carefully.
People will find it hard to deceive you as they will never really know your position on things. Saying less will also keep you from saying something foolish or even dangerous.
Talk less and you gain power.
You Will Develop Impulse Control
How many times have we said something in the ‘heat of the moment’ and regretted it later on? But once the words are out, they cannot be taken back. The damage is done.
When you train yourself to purposefully say less, you control what comes out of your mouth. You learn to bite your tongue.
By training ourselves to talk less, we are taking control of our own emotional impulses. When someone says something upsetting or frustrating, rather than snapping back a response, you are able to control your response or not even say anything at all.
Talk less and master your emotions.
Do You Actually Have Something to Say?
Before you say something, try and think about why you feel the need to speak. Are you speaking to add something of value to the conversation or are you just trying to look good in front of others? Are you trying to one-up someone just to stroke your own ego?
There is power in saying less.
Give it a go and see what happens.
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