Speak only what you want into existence. This is the biggest lesson I learned on my 4 day voiceless retreat that was not of my choosing.
A couple weeks ago, I had a cold which turned into a cough. I coughed so much that I ended up with laryngitis and lost my voice completely for 4 days.
This turned out to be a transformational experience.
I had to use different skills to communicate with my family and I also gained immense gratitude for the gift that is my voice.
This is what I learned…
Firstly, we talk and say way more words than necessary in a day. Most of the things we say aren’t required at all. It’s fluff. We don’t speak to have deep and meaningful conversations.
Speak only what you want.
Your words create your world. What kind of world do you want to create?
When I was limited in the amount of words I could whisper, I had to decide before I opened my mouth if what I wanted to say was worth saying. What I decided was, if I was opening my mouth to complain about something or to say something negative about a person or experience, then it wasn’t necessary to say it.
Speaking is a fraction of what we use to communicate.
When I was using hand gestures, the people around me were still able to understand. Because my kids aren’t able to read yet, I couldn’t write anything down. I was grateful that my husband and I taught our kids baby sign when they were young. These simple commands allowed me to sign to my family and they understood what I needed.
When you talk less, you listen more.
Even when someone else is talking, the tendency is to think in our head what we want to say next. That is not listening. When I know I don’t have anything to say, I can fully focus on listening.
Gratitude for what you have.
I have only lost my voice a handful of times in my life. I am so grateful that it’s been with me for almost all my life. I am filled in awe by what it allows me to do in a day.
So now, I have a challenge for you, without getting laryngitis 🙂 I want you to try a 1 day self imposed silent experiment where you don’t use your voice to communicate with anyone.
See what you learn and leave a comment.