Silence Creates Despair

silence“Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” Rudyard Kipling spoke these famous words to the Royal College of Surgeons in London in 1923.[1] He understood how words can change the way another person thinks and feels.1 They can influence people—more than drugs.1

At that time, Adolf Hitler was rising to power in Germany.1 His success was due to his ability to use words to manipulate, persuade, and control.1 He led an entire culture toward hatred and war with his words.1 Words can destroy.

Another timeless phrase: “Do unto others as you would have other do unto you.”1 Often attributed to Jesus, these words often stir the conscience of millions.1 Words can heal.

Even when unspoken, words retain their power.1 The meaning that is wrapped in language are able to alter life in an instant.1 Refusing to unwrap those words and let them flow out of your mouth through communication can create quite a burden on your psyche.1 From this, there is little relief.1 Unexpressed, it festers within your soul, making you suffer—alone.1

Therefore, to speak or not to speak? To speak. Here are six reasons why:

  1. Unspoken words salt old wounds.1 Kept inside, words keep the emotional wounds from healing. Speaking them allows the hurt to leave your mind and your body. When they leave, and are spoken, they can be sorted out and dealt with.
  2. Silence traps you in bad situations.1 When you do not speak up, the circumstances surrounding your suffering will not change. Oftentimes, when others know that you are unhappy, they will change the circumstances to make you feel better.
  3. Silence creates distance.1 When you are feeling negatively towards someone and do not let them know, you begin to act differently around them and slowly your relationship with them fades away. This doesn’t always make things better, unless they were a negative influence in the first place.
  4. Unspoken words enable wrongdoing.1 Keeping quiet shows that you are consenting to whatever is going on, even if you don’t. You are setting yourself up to be taken advantage of.
  5. Silence can be selfish.1 By not participating in conversation, opening up, and sharing, you are being self-centered. Others would like to hear what you have to say, even if you don’t believe they do.
  6. Silence can be lonely.1 Words enable us to connect with others. Silence refuses you the change to let others agree, disagree, support you, and withdraw from you. While it might not be a risk you would like to take, you are also eliminating the possibility of acceptance. Without words, nobody knows who you are.

Find your voice.1 Develop your confidence.1 Work on communication skills.1 Look to resolve old feelings.1 Find courage.1 It will change your life.1

[1] Bundrant, M. (2014). 6 Ways Remaining Silent Creates Pain and Despair. Psych Central. Retrieved on January 29, 2014, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/nlp/2014/01/remaining-silent/

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