CommunicationThe Blend Factor

The Shut Up Zone: Learning When NOT To Speak

Communication is key. That is the belief of this generation. In fact, communication is a major economic commodity. Being connected is so important that almost every new electronic device boasts about internet connectivity. It seems that reaching others and being reached is so important that blue tooth devices and handsfree electronics are essentials to today’s drivers to allow them to talk without the distraction of pressing buttons. Talking and providing individual input if even from afar at times may seem to be the solution to preventing and solving problems. Providing people with their proverbial “2 cents”, is the mantra of many. However in sustaining a relationship of love/marriage, knowing when to speak up and when to shut up can be the tie that binds or the thread that breaks the fabric of the relationship. Speaking up is relevant in that it allows both parties to verbally express feelings (good or bad). Speaking up can clear up misunderstandings and smooth over disagreements.

However, there are times when “speaking up” can be destructive. Those are the times to suppress the natural desire to speak. In other words, time to “shut up”. There are ways to know when it is time to not speak and remain in “the Shut up Zone”.

  1. When speaking up will cause division, perhaps those words should not be spoken. If there is natural hesitation to speak on something, honor that hesitation and just remain quiet.
  2.  When speaking up will cause depression of an individual’s dream or self esteem, don’t say it. There is no value in tearing someone down.
  3.  When speaking up will cause disagreements, consider the costs versus the benefit. Will something good come from the disagreement? If not, remain quiet.
  4.  When speaking up will cause disappointment, look within and examine the motives for speaking on that topic. If it is for selfish reasons only, just shut up. Nothing good will be gained by causing disappointment.

Words have power. When the question arises as to whether to speak up or shut up, examine value the words will place on the given situation. If the words will enhance and enlighten, speak up. If the words will destroy, remain quiet and visit “The Shut Up Zone” .

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Cindy Bivins Coleman

Cindy Bivins Coleman

She is the mother of 4 sons. She will be forever bound to her two daughters of marriage (although the marriage ended). They will always be family.