As grandparents, learning how to control the urge to not step on toes or overstep boundaries in relationships is an important part of our personal being that can affect every aspect of life and our familial and social relationships. For some people, silence comes naturally. These fortunate individuals know the power of silence and they are comfortable in that silence. However, there are quite a few of us who need to learn the art of practicing silence. We aren’t recommending living in a world where you practice silence 24/7, but rather we are suggesting there exists a great balance of personal control, and most of us can use a little coaching. In doing so, your relationships will benefit greatly with a little discipline no doubt. After all, no matter what our age is, who couldn’t use a little self-reflection? Here’s three great tips:
Silence gets people’s attention
If you have been in a classroom or a group situation you have most likely experienced how silence often gets everyone’s attention. If the teacher or presenter is talking away, the listeners’ minds might start to wander. When the speaker stops talking, a signal goes to the brain that something has happened. All of a sudden you pay attention and try to figure out why communication has stopped. The same is true in our daily conversations. If we are silent, people take note and we gain their attention.
Silence can be an obvious answer
Sometimes when we communicate, we say too much. We over-explain. If a question is met with silence, there is often an answer in that silence. We can also soften the blow of a negative answer by silence being the response. There is an implied “no” without any harsh words or too many words that might do more harm than good. Another example is when someone says something we don’t agree with or find offensive. If we are silent, we send a powerful message that communicates that we don’t agree or are not going along with what someone is saying.
Silence offers empathy to others
There are times in life where silence offers empathy and understanding to others. Sometimes we don’t have the right words to communicate to someone who is struggling with a hurtful or sorrowful situation. We can show someone we care, and we are there for them without using a plethora of words. We can offer comfort by our calming silence.
Have you been looking for ways to help manage your personal relationships while staying in your grandparent lane? Check out this previous article on help for “hovering” grandparents who may need to discover how silence is a positive power!
*Portions of article sourced from: https://www.lifehack.org/347881/5-reasons-why-silence-source-great-strength