There really aren't rules about when Silence is Golden. However there are some common sense opinions worth discussing, to perhaps make life and relationships on Planet Earth easier to navigate through. Honing great communication skills is a worthy goal to strive for. However these skills are meaningless if two or more individuals choose not to communicate at all with each other. This week I would like to share some ideas on Silence Is Golden Rules.
Have you ever noticed that the minds of many individuals are often programmed to rank their experiences with others from worse to best? One might perform many worthy deeds for their customers, friends or family members over time, yet the recipients too easily forget the positives and remember some negative instances to dwell on about their relationships. Somehow negatives have a tendency to move to the top of one's consciousness, negating scores of positive experiences and stopping total communications in relationships. This is a typical example of when to enforce the Silence is Golden Rule. Silence will never fix any negative thoughts. Both parties need to talk things out and then FORGET THE PAST FOREVER! Almost every religion has "forgive and forget" scriptures to live by. Yet few people seem willing to practice this simple rule. Life is too short to hold a grudge against anyone. You don't have to be friends with everyone. However, it's healthy to "forgive and forget" and move on filling your consciousness with all the positives that surround you. Never weigh yourself down with negative thoughts about others, unless you enjoy living a life of self induced misery.
Many business relationships fail for similar reasons. Most small businesses are started by friends or relatives who form a partnership. They do this in order to spread their risk and share in the many responsibilities a business presents. I once worked for company owned by two equal partners running the company, where the partners didn't have a conversation with each other for years. They ran their end of the company and communicated through their managers and employees and seemed to hate each others guts! This is another typical example of when silence is not golden. None of the employees even knew why they hated each other. It was probably due to some petty disagreement that never had a chance to get resolved. Thus instead of talking things through and forgiving and forgetting, they chose to endure years of misery. These were intelligent individuals who could have changed the course of their life by avoiding their daily silent treatment.
Silence or poor communication has led the way to just about every war and atrocity in history and leading to the deaths of hundreds of millions of people. Yet human beings still have not learned a lesson from these wars. When individuals who live together and love each other can't forgive and forget just think how difficult it is for rest of the world. Even though we all know better, we just keep making the same mistakes of ending communications with each other. Perhaps discussing and pondering this issue can lead us to positive change.
Now let's turn the coin. While silence can ruin relationships due to one inability to get over the negatives and dwell on the positives, it can also save good relationships. Nagging about the same stuff that we dislike, over and over can easily ruin one's day, week or life for that matter. A hypothetical example might be how loving couples might argue over the silliest things. A husband might forget to hang his pants a hundred times and hears about it every single time from his wife. This small issue might lead to a disastrous argument that is far removed from the pants issue. The husband may do hundreds of positive things but may have a mental block about a hanging his pants. However each time this incidence occurs, every negative thing that ever occurred in decades will be triggered and brought into the discussion. This is a great example when Silence CAN be Golden.
Little things can trigger lots of negative emotions. It's better to avoid confrontations over silly things and ignore them, rather than trigger negative emotions 100 times. We all know what makes those around us unhappy. We need to restrain ourselves more and take our finger off the trigger through silence. Don't sweat the small stuff. Better to accept some small stuff in order to improve our personal, family and business relationships. We can't make someone else act exactly the way we want them to be. However, we all have the ability to change our own actions and can strive toward dwelling on the positive in order to make our relationships the BEST they can be.
When it comes to living a better life, small tweaks in your actions and proper choices can create a brighter future for you and those you interact with. Don't avoid talking through your differences with others. Learn to Forgive and Forget. Create your own Silence is Golden Rules and make tomorrow a better day than today!