Sunday, November 28, 2010
The Power of Silence
Now that the Company has gone and we've delivered borrowed dogs and leftovers where they belonged, I note just how quiet my home is. I'll confess that I even abhor the constant Christmas music now that it's played on radio from Halloween to New Year's. So I find myself immersed in a welcome "hush" this Sunday after Thanksgiving.
This morning, while tuning into the Sunday morning news broadcasts, I heard one of the commentators talking about an aphorism in journalism about silence. He said the old adage goes: "Let the silence suck out the truth." What a powerful message for mediators! Silence can be among the best tools and yet least appreciated or employed in a mediation. It's been a hard lesson for me to learn: the art of sitting on my hands with my mouth shut and allowing the disputants to discuss and debate and ultimately collaborate on a way to settle their own disputes. Yet I find that in those moments when true emotion heats up and boils the silence in the room can, indeed "suck out the truth" in the key to a difficult resolution. Welcome quiet and the truth shall set you free!