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Silence

 

Techniques > Resisting persuasion >  Silence

Method | Example | Discussion | See also

 

Method

Just say nothing. Whatever they say, do not respond. Answer statements with silence. Answer questions with silence too.

If you wish, you can send body-language signals, looking interested or bored or just plain blank. A good one is to look thoughtful, as if you are partly listening and then musing deeply about what was said.

You can, if you wish, add little interjections and other noises, but otherwise do avoid any verbal response.

Example

Hmm.

A sales person is faced with a person who just stares back. Disconcerted, the sales person uses a number of techniques to try and get a response. Eventually, they crack and start offering increasingly high discounts.

Discussion

Silence is the most difficult form of resistance to overcome. By saying nothing, you are neither agreeing nor disagreeing. Avoid giving them even the smallest thing to work with. Let them think that their silence means agreement, if they like; you can always pop that balloon later. They may also think you are stupid. Let them think that: they may well leave earlier.

As long as you can maintain it, silence is probably the most effective technique for resisting. It gives the persuader no feedback on their techniques, whether you are persuaded or not.

See also

Using Body Language

 

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