This made me laugh: ‘Small talk is fairly fast. Someone says something like, “John really did a great job on the party this year. Have you been to this event in the past?” This should be followed up with a quick response (such as “Yes I have” or “No, it’s my first time.”) But introverts like to chew on their words before saying them aloud. They’ll think about that question a bit, and other things will pop into their mind, like “I wonder how they know John,” or even “Why would they care if I’ve been to other parties?” Before they answer, they’ll mull over different thoughts. This silence, although very short, can unnerve people if you’re not used to it.’
That tiny pause between the question and the answer. Little silences can get filled with so much self-doubt and confusion on both sides. I suppose the assumption is that silence suggests that something has gone wrong, or that one of the speakers is avoiding speaking the truth. Like ‘I don’t really want to talk to you at all,’ which is actually quite unlikely. My music teacher used to say that the space between the notes are just as important as the notes themselves. The silence is an integral part of the music. More often we are rushing to fill the emptiness. It’s amazing how many secrets are spoken just to fill an awkward silence.