A recent issue of Time Magazine had this headline: “Overtalkers are everywhere, but saying less will get you more.” (Time Magazine, February 6, 2023, page 63)
The article pointed out what we know is true, “The world is filled with overtalkers. You run into them all the time.” A couple of statements really got my attention: “Americans sit through more than a billion meetings a year, but think that half are a complete waste of time. We are tweeting for the sake of tweeting, talking for the sake of talking.”
Can you identify with that? Have you experienced this? But yet the author, Dan Lyons, pointed out, “Many of the most powerful and successful people do the exact opposite. Instead of seeking attention, they hold back. When they do speak, they are careful about what they say.”
The Apostle James offered some valuable advice: “Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” (James 1:19)
The magazine suggested five steps to overcome overtalking. (1) When possible, say nothing. (2) Master the power of the pause. Take a breath. Wait. (3) Quit social media, or at least dial it back. The first cousin to overtalking is overtweeting. (4) Seek out silence. Detach. Unplug. (5) Learn HOW to listen. Focus. Pay fierce attention to the other person.
A good word, perhaps, that we need to hear. My prayer today is that I will be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry. Maybe that is your prayer also.