“I actually learned that you have more power when you shut up.” ~ Andy Warhol
Strength In Silence
People from every culture and every country and every religious persuasion speak virtuously about silence. As a young man, Andy Warhol came to the conclusion that it was virtually impossible to get someone to do what you wanted by talking. For Benjamin Franklin it was one of his 13 Virtues.
In the book The 48 Laws of Power, the section on the “Keys to Power” contains the following statements: “Saying less than necessary is not for kings and statesmen only. In most areas of life, the less you say, the more profound you appear. By saying less than necessary, you create the appearance of meaning and power.”
In my own midlife divorce recovery journey, I had a terrible time keeping my mouth shut. Even when I wasn’t talking out of anger but trying to convince my wasband to come back home or to give up his girlfriend, I was talking too much. It was like talking to a brick wall. And all my effort did was make me frustrated and leave me looking and feeling like the foolish one.
Though there are definitely moments during a divorce process where you should make our opinions and feelings known, there are an equal amount of opportunities to just stop and let someone else fill in the spaces of silence.
Let them make themselves look foolish. By us not talking more than is absolutely necessary, they begin to get flustered and start dancing around with their silly and ridiculous arguments. How much better off we are to just stand there in quiet control than to let our lips start flapping.
Choose Your Words Wisely
Anyway, in most cases, the more we talk, the less they listen. Let’s all try today to only say what really needs to be said. Let’s have fun, but today lets give our “lips and teeth” a rest. It will be good discipline, and we might find out other people have interesting things to say, and in the future, they might listen to what we do say more carefully.
“Watch your words and control your tongue; you’ll save yourself a lot of grief.” ~ Proverbs 21:23 (The Message)
Struggling to hold your tongue during divorce?
Read these 10 emails in our divorce recovery crash course.