Tuesday, July 04, 2017

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How To Overcome The Spiral Of Silence And Win


Quote of the day: 

In the End, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King, Jr.






Public opinion is a term often bandied about especially in political discussions. But what does it actually mean, as opposed to perhaps having a private opinion?. Well it is the opinion shared by majority of the people collectively -basically the views, attitudes and beliefs shared by many people about a particular topic or event.

On the other hand you have what is called the 'Spiral of Silence'. A theory proposed by the German political scientist Elisabeth Noelle-Neumann, it basically refers to the tendency for some people to remain silent when they feel that their views may not be heard by the majority. These people have a fear of being isolated, resulting from the idea that social groups or the public in general may neglect or exclude them due to their personal opinions. One tool that encourages self-censorship to happen online is social media.

This spiral of silence can be seen everywhere, and it can happen to anyone if its taken outside the context of politics and merged into everyday life it still holds true. For instance, who hasn't kept silent in a class discussion for fear of being ridiculed by peers or not being heard, or in office environment or at a family gathering, and a dozen or more instances where we felt isolated and unable to raise our voice against the status quo for fear of appearing different, going against the norm and the majority who rule everything. Having a collective opinion on something does not automatically make it correct. Neither does it make its dominance supreme.

This fear can go on to translate into our everyday lives. We grow up in this spiral of silence, a little seed planted a long time ago and growing slowly as time goes by. We fear something, so we don't do it. We fear isolation, so we never speak up. We see actions being perpetrated and our mouths remain shut, we get treated badly and smile, we fear rejection so we suppress our feelings, and on and on it goes like a roller coaster.  It all begins at a time and place often in our subconsciousness. When we have the support of others, or the majority we often voice our opinion with confidence. On the other hand when we feel no support forthcoming we stay in the back of the room away from prying eyes.

It is time to be heard. Time to say things as they truly are, straight from the heart, forming an opinion that is wholly yours. Not suppressing thoughts or feelings but letting it out into the universe. Go from a spiral of silence and fear to a spiral of confidence and happiness. Even if you are the only person in the room with a different opinion -then so be it. If you have to speak up for yourself or the people you value, I believe that nothing should stand in the way to your victorious win. Your opinion is as relevant as that of any majority -if you are part of the group, good, if not, even better.

On another note, each month is no different from the last, give or take a couple of hours. A new month has a way of tip toeing behind you in surprise leaving you pondering how fast the previous month went. The fireworks from ushering in the new year still resonates, but then again half the year is gone, and time has no brakes or break on this journey of life. You do what you have to do to survive. Finding the correct balance between work and life is tied to how you manage time effectively -a topic for another post really. It is about time you take back control of your life, do away time wasting and irrelevant pursuits that often lead nowhere. Of course, not being able to deal with time can lead to work overload and stress -which then leads to other things, creating a spiral of its own. Yes, that spiral just won't go away.

Happy July.


Peace. Love. Light* 



Current Listen: Yaël Naïm - Toxic



36 comments:

  1. Very interesting post. Many things to ponder. Happy July. Thanks for your visit.

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  2. Too many people "just look the other way" on most things , thus, "Private Opinion"

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  3. Very interesting and inspiring post!
    This is a pretty important and common situation so it's useful to learn how to overcome the silence!
    XO
    S
    https://s-fashion-avenue.blogspot.it

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  4. Maybe we should drop the Victorian idea of children being seen and not heard. I think the silence you speak of starts in childhood. Voices shushed and behavior learned especially for girls.

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  5. Speaking up against a bully in the workplace can be an isolating experience. Doing your job when others are too scared Is tough. Backlash from a bully can silence others who leave you isolated and a target for the bully when others fail to support your action. Still, I would do it all again as difficult as it was..

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  6. Speaking up is hard at times. But necessary. Especally in American politics now.

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  7. Sometimes it better to be silent, than to potentially offend others.

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  8. I practice somewhat of a spiral of silence, but it's not based on fear whatsoever. It's based on knowing that it's useless to voice my opinion because it's never taken seriously - this has to do mostly with village stuff and politics. What's the point? It gets too frustrating to be discarded so I'd rather just keep my opinions to myself and not feel any negativity, that way I'm much happier, knowing that my opinion really makes no difference anyhow. I just live my life the way I want and it works very well for me!

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  9. With all the whiners these days, sometimes better to keep quiet or you may offend someone by just rolling your eyes.

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  10. Boa tarde, as pessoas inteligentes usam o silencio no momento próprio, é o silencio necessário, Martin Luther também o usou quando foi oportuno fica no silencio.
    Boa semana,
    AG

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  11. The spiral of silence is most welcome in my head anytime 😊 The irony of time is that it speeds up as we grow older and wouldn't mind it slowing down, and passes slowly when we're young and impatient for it to pass ☺ c'est la vie!

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  12. This is so important, we must learn to speak up sometimes.

    Amy;
    Little Moon Elephant

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  13. A very inspiring post! I do intend to read it again.
    Best regards
    : )

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  14. There's so much to think about in this post. Thank you for that.

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  15. Aha. It's wisdom indeed to know when to speak up and when to keep silent.

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  16. Time to say things as they truly are, straight from the heart........I love that sentence you have written. I have always been one to say what I believe. Yes, it has often gotten me in the opposite direction of the crowd, but it's the only way I know to be. Your thoughts here are unique and special. Silence can be productive too; we just have to know when to speak and when not to. That is sometimes hard, isn't it? Great post, my friend.

    ~Sheri


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  17. Beautiful words from a very intelligent and positive person!! Thank you so much for sharing this with us! Dominica from London, www.dominicas.uk xXx

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  18. Beautiful Post! Great Work :)

    lovely Greetings from Vienna!

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  19. Excellent post (as always)!Thank you very much :)

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  20. Important and well written post. Shared so others may benefit.

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  21. I agree with your point and your sentiment. I think that action is often more important than words however. Silence isn't necessarily a bad thing...however, inaction in the face of injustice, is unacceptable. So, yes, we do have to have a voice but we must, more importantly, cultivate a mind and a heart that speak louder than words ever can. Excellent post. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

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  22. Lots of food for thought here. I've always believed it's important to know when to speak and when to just keep your mouth shut. It can be a fine line.

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  23. With age I have learned to choose my battles. Sometimes I wait until the opportune time to make some noise. Some pots simmer until ready to explode and I have to do nothing. It does not mean I am not watching. I act when I see that my actions will accomplish something.

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  24. Interesting read.
    I wish you a wonderful week.

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  25. I'm expecting the litany of folly now exhibiting itself in Washington D.C will break that spiral of silence beginning with a revival of community over greed and ego now threatening our very survival...

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  26. I probably speak up more often than I should. This post reminds me of the time I returned to school at 42 and had a professor who was from the North and 32. As he maligned Southerners and told all of us, most 18 years old, how bad we in the South were, I spoke up and we had a civil argument. Not one person spoke up. The prof was rewriting the Vietnam war. I figured all the kids would hate me as they all silently left class. The next day, almost 30 people spoke to me, telling me they had talked to their parents or grandparents who said I was exactly right.

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  27. You are such a positive person! I love your words!
    Kisses, Paola.
    Expressyourself

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  28. Need that in my life! Great post!

    Bloglovin
    STYLEFORMANKIND.COM

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  29. Well saying.
    Have a nice day !

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  30. Your words ring true, though it can be difficult not to feel discouraged these days with so much madness and cruelty prevailing in the world.

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    Elizabeth Alexandra from United Kingdom.

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  32. Hi Blogoratti - keeping quiet is the passive thing isn't it ... but I am opinionated, just sometimes it's easier to be peaceful. Excellent post though - that spiral of Silence - I don't aspire to it - I just keep care of myself (for now) ... cheers Hilary

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