The Gift of Silence

In his 1994 interview with Charlie Rose, Fred Rogers (famous for his children’s show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood) emphasized repeatedly the importance of margins and silence, in life and in communication.

In speaking of his (then) new book, he explains:

“This book is about… the white space between the paragraphs, which I think is more important than the text, because it lets you think about what’s been said.”

He went on to describe silence as a gift that we can give to others. 

I love it when interviewees try to cut past the professional figure of their interviewer and turn the conversation from public script to personal conversation. Mr. Rogers did that in continually asking Mr. Rose the wonderful question, “In our industry, Mr. Rose, how can we offer people the gift of silence?”

A fitting question for all of us: 

How can we offer others the gift of silence?

Watch the interview below (or here):