Silence is golden

May 24, 2010

Why is silence so uncomfortable?

Whether it be a shared commute or a lunch conversation, a pregnant pause always seems to make things awkward.

People avoid eye contact, or shoot each other faint smiles trying hard to think of something to say. In elevator rides they resort to talking about the weather. In cabs, they ask if the traffic is always bad this time of day.

With gadgets like the iPod and iPhone, they pretend to immerse themselves in another world…an escape from the deafening silence of the here and now.

People don’t like silence when they are around other people. They have to talk, however meaningless the conversation may be.

Why is it so hard to have a quiet lunch… sit in silence with each other…just relishing each other’s company?

Why do we have to “fill the void” with banter or music when we can let our minds wander? When we can use that time to think, to sit back, to relax, to just be?

What is it about silence that daunts us?

Why do we need external audio stimuli to keep us occupied?

Why is sitting in silence so hard?

And why does keeping quiet have to be associated with meditating? Why connect it with spirituality, religion, or introspection?

Why does it have to be serious?

Why can’t embracing silence be the fun thing to do?

It doesn’t have to be romantic or about getting back at someone.

Enjoy the Silence by WickedNox1 Silence is goldenIt doesn’t have to be awkward or guilt-ridden.

It doesn’t have to be something you avoid or work hard to break.

Silence can be be completely neutral.

Simple speechlessness that doesn’t have to be practiced in solitude.

It can be comforting. Familiar. And something you can share.

Try it sometime.

16081BD1A60533E0F1173D28DE4F0D3F Silence is golden

dp seal trans 16x16 Silence is goldenCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2010 Mansi Bhatia

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10 Responses to Silence is golden

  1. VyankateshNo Gravatar on May 24, 2010 at 3:44 am

    Nicely penned thoughts Mansi.

    I personally think that silence between two people is possible in the surroundings you mentioned when they are "oh so comfortable" with each other.

    Otherwise, they will have to resort to a a verbal banter to make themselves feel comfortable and avoid the situation from getting awkward.

    However, I prefer silence!!

    • MansiNo Gravatar on May 25, 2010 at 2:31 pm

      Thanks, Vyankatesh. Yes, I agree, for the most part silence between two people (without any agendas) is most likely to be achieved when they’re comfortable with each other. But, it doesn’t have to be that way :-)

  2. SusanNo Gravatar on May 24, 2010 at 7:51 am


    What a thoughtful piece. I just like silence. As much as I like to talk, silence is always welcome. There have been times where my friends and I have sat for hours just watching the waters in the sea or the stars in the sky.

    Something to look for in this noisy and nosy world!

    Joy always,

    • MansiNo Gravatar on May 25, 2010 at 9:32 pm

      That’s great, Susan — to have friends who can share that silence with you.

      • vikasNo Gravatar on November 13, 2011 at 4:32 am

        u r rit mansi, completly agree wid u .

  3. S.R.AyyangarNo Gravatar on May 24, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    Literary speaking , Silence can win several wars specially at home!

  4. BillNo Gravatar on May 25, 2010 at 3:41 am

    Interesting, I believe we don’t know silence anymore because we’re to busy & our upbringing now fills every moment with something to do. I remember many years ago when my two younger daughters had nothing to do when we were in the Smokies & I told them to sit on the balcony & watch the stream….that’s all. They later told me that that was their favorite part of the trip because they never just sat & were quiet. We all multi-task & over schedule our lives there’s no time to just “be”….nice thoughts…thanks.



    • MansiNo Gravatar on May 25, 2010 at 2:33 pm

      Thanks, Bill. I think things will change for the better…when we realize how oversaturated our lives are getting with streaming information 24/7. We will make time, then, to just be. To soak in silence. To appreciate it. And want it.

  5. JeannieNo Gravatar on May 25, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    I agree with you 100% and enjoy silence even with strangers on elevators.

    I would like peace and quiet while having a pedicure. Why do some women choose this particular time to call their friends and coworkers and carry on loud and obnoxious conversations of which we are privy to only the excruciating, annoying half? Why do these women not get the decorum hint even when they see our feet soaking in hot water, our legs being massaged, our eyes closed,no one else talking, and our foreheads becoming more and more furrowed from the stress of their relentless verbosity?

    Yet the rude gabber rattles on. This condition is worse than not knowing how to be silent; some people just don’t know when to shut up!

  6. In step or not? | First Impressions on October 18, 2010 at 10:59 am

    […] fact, I quite like the idea of comfortable silence … I’ve been on many walks with my husband with nary a word uttered. But we’ve […]


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