Speech is one of the primary ways in which we dissipate our energy. Excessive speech also creates the basis for much of the mental distraction and chatter that clouds meditation. Observe the effect of the following resolutions on your sense of calmness, clarity, and depth of meditation.
1. Be firm, clear, and gentle when you speak to others. Avoid being harsh or curt. Try especially to avoid frivolous, petty, or hostile speech, such as gossip.
2. Do not lie. (Notice how difficult this is! Many people lie by intentionally misleading others as well as by outright untruths.)
3. Express yourself without excessive drama, theatrical gestures, or exaggeration.
4. Be more silent. Speak as little as possible, and for a clear purpose. Notice your tendency to speak to attract attention or notice from others.
5. Decide what you want to say before you begin speaking. Why do you feel the need to say it? Is it useful to yourself or others?
6. Listen more than you speak. Remember, each of us has two ears, but none of us has more than one mouth!
7. Practice keeping silent for two hours every day. (Notice how much more energy you have and how much calmer you feel.)