Stay Silent if You Have Nothing to Say - Kay-Lambert Associates Limited

Kay-Lambert Associates Limited

Training, Coaching & Consultancy for Growth

Stay Silent if You Have Nothing to Say

The Silent Treatment Doesn’t Have to be Cruel

There’s an affliction that hits extroverts particularly hard, and that’s the difficulty of remaining silent when they have nothing to say. Introverts are typically more comfortable maintaining the silence whilst they ponder and reflect. They don’t feel the same need to fill the space, but for many extroverts, space is an opportunity, an invitation to close it down.

Listen to an extrovert talk for 10 minutes and you’ll probably capture as much, if you’re lucky, as the introvert delivers in 30 seconds. 95% is wasted energy and pretty-much content-free.

Not all extroverts are windbags, but many can talk the hind-legs off a donkey. And it isn’t their talking that bothers me. If anything, it can be very entertaining, and I have to confess a vested interest here because I, too, am an extrovert. The issue for me is two-fold:

  1. Is there enough room for the introverted wisdom?

And …

  1. What’s the problem of admitting that you genuinely have nothing to add?

Why should people be so afraid of being caught with nothing to say? There’s something very liberating about realising that it’s all been said, or we have nothing extra to contribute. We don’t need to have the last word, nor is it required that we summarise and expand, add another example or anecdote, repeat ourselves to give the illusion of building. It’s OK to say nothing, but if that’s too hard, you could just say, “I have nothing further to add”.

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