The Sunday Feed

Sounds of Silence

I have been a lecturer for more than a decade and I have often asked a question to the budding minds. — What is the loudest sound you have ever heard?

Never has anyone come with the one word answer — Silence. Nothing is more lethal than an absence of sound, especially when the person we like the most uses it as a weapon to confront us.

Silence should not be labeled as a negative trait because though it is used in that manner, it can work miracles if applied correctly. Here are some ways in which it can be leveraged to our advantage.

1. Building Relationships: The level of trust shared mutually by both the parties can determine the strength of the bond. And the one reason why people don’t trust the other person is because they never find the other person listening to them as much as they would like.

We live in a world where productivity is determined by number of activities done instead of the actual outcome. This has resulted in people talking even when there was a need to actually shut-up and listen

2. Get more by Negotiation: Negotiation is a mathematical race often lost on emotional grounds. Just try to recollect as to how many times you have overpaid for something you liked or bought something you never used.

The number one rule is always to quote as little as possible when buying and as high as possible when selling. The second rule is to shut your mouth and play the opponent by using silence as a weapon. If the other party calls you to negotiate, you have an advantage, as you will be leading the deal.

3. Empower: A lot of Managers are actually very bad at their job because they often tend to micro-manage. This puts too much pressure on the employee for them to leave.

If you are a leader, you will direct not manage. Tell the staff what to do and get off the way and only come in if there is a problem. Let them do their work in silence.

4. Closing the deal: If you really want to know how good a person is at football without actually seeing him or her on the field, just hand them a football. The way they interact with it will be enough to understand at what level are they operating.

Such is the case with deals. When you try to push too much you come out as either too immature or too desperate. Put your offer and become quiet. If the other party is interested, they will call. If they don’t you will know it is not worth wasting time on them and move on. Sale is always about numbers so have the other lead ready to go.

5. Reboot: We live in a world where we start the computer in the morning and close it before we retire for the day. This helps the machine to rest and reboot.

Our lives should follow the same pattern, but more often. Close yourself from all distractions every couple of hours and look inside. This will help you to perform better because your thinking will be clearer and you will be able to spot mistakes that you are making by taking time out. It’s like a reboot for your mind. 15 minutes of silence is all you need every couple of hours.

I am seriously giving it a thought to nominate Sunday as a silent day. No phones, no TV, no social media, just fishing in the serene stream or walking the placid fields. I bet I will become a better person in just a few months.

Does not seem easy at all. I shudder to think how I will ever walk the talk. Giving up so many addictions in one go is going to cause major withdrawal symptoms. But nothing hard comes easy. Wish me luck! I am about to embark on a life-changing journey!

John Khalkho

CEO: Dolores Education

Photo: Rafael Barros

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