How often do you choose to just stay silent in a group meeting or in a group conversation instead of saying what’s truly in your mind? Are you withholding your thoughts because you’re afraid of sounding stupid?
Unless it’s slander or anything that will breed resentment (except for necessary confrontations) then staying silent is the wisest choice we can make.
However, if you stay silent for fear of sounding like an idiot or that your opinion seems too obvious for an assessment, then you might have shortchanged yourself of self-respect.
Put it this way: you’re a decent human being. You were created with an awesome gift of five senses. And most of all, you were created to share. We all are. You respect other people but you must respect yourself more, and that includes your opinion.
Every interaction is a learning experience about other people. But it is of minimal significance compared to your learning about yourself. Your words do not only tell others about yourself, it also tells YOU something about you.
It is for YOUR learning. You are not a clown or a dummy, and you’re never obligated by anyone unless you allow yourself, to express only the words that please people (unless you’re making a living out of the entertainment industry).
Your voice is what truly matters and not other people’s reaction. Respect yourself. Out of that self-respect you will find the audacity to express your thoughts just as they are. Respect yourself by giving your respectable opinion because you have something to say. And once you do, you are affirming that self-respect and at the same time you’re giving yourself the opportunity to learn something about yourself.
And besides, some people will admire you, envy you even for having the balls to say what’s on your mind without minding what others think of you.
So respect yourself, don’t shut up but speak up. Who knows, someone else might be in a dire need to hear your words.