March 20, 2023
How to Find Your Voice and Make a Difference
How many times have you wanted or needed to say something but opted to stay silent just because you were afraid of being ridiculed? How has that impacted your life? Can you develop the courage to speak out?
To speak out is to openly say your thoughts, ideas, feelings, and opinion about something. It is a way of advocating for your rights and needs as well as for others. Everyone has a message they want to impart, but not all have the courage to speak.
They choose to keep quiet even if they know their message can impact someone else’s life. They do not want to speak out in front of a large crowd or even to a single person who has the authority to assess them.
Forbes Magazine has noted public speaking as the number one fear. In fact, 76% of the population is frightened of speaking in public.
Why people do not speak out
People often do not have the courage to speak out because they dread being the center of attention. They do not want to stand out and be seen. They want to hide their vulnerabilities for fear of being judged, ridiculed, or rejected.
Fear is innate in all human beings. It is a mechanism that helps us survive against perceived threats or dangers. It is our flight or fight response. Speaking brings with it social threats.
Most of us look for acceptance and want to fit in because we are a pack. We are creatures that survive better when we are part of the group and as a result we always try to conform to who society wants us to do or to be.
Fears of speaking out can also stem from negative experiences like being yelled at, laughed at, and abused for speaking up. These traumatic events prevent us from vocalizing what we need to say. We shut down to prevent further harm to ourselves.
Why you need to speak out
Speaking out can lead to social change. It can improve life by advocating for yourself or for others to bring positive results. If you want to improve your life you need to assert your best interests particularly when decisions are being made on your behalf.
People often take silence as a sign of approval when things are being discussed. This can result in a life of resentment when you do not really agree with the decisions that have been made because it denies you of your needs and others can misunderstand your actions and intentions.
Expressing your views and knowledge helps people understand and know you better. It can also widen their points of view by conveying new ideas and issues which they may not have known before.
In addition, speaking out inspires others to do the same. It gives others the motivation and courage to stand up for themselves and convey their needs.
Moreover, verbalizing your emotions or feelings relieves you of stress and releases negative emotions that can adversely affect your mental and physical health. It prevents you from exploding at inappropriate times.
How to find your voice
Speaking out requires courage or bravery. It involves working around your fear and having the determination to do something. Courage is a virtue that we all have but not all of us see ourselves in that light. Only 1 in 3 people see themselves as being courageous.
When in your life did you have the courage to do something difficult and challenging? Did it not make you feel empowered and enthusiastic to accomplish more?
People often rise when they have had enough of a situation. They tend to behave in ways that they do not normally do when a crisis happens. However, people revert to who they were before once the dilemma has been averted.
Stop and Look
To change and find your voice you need to stop and look at where you are. If you do not do so, you will continue to live life in the way that you have always lived and get what you have always got.
It is only when you pause and view your life with a fresh pair of eyes can you realise the things you have accomplished, the wisdom you have learned, and the things you need to improve on. You will understand that there is nothing wrong with you and that you are complete.
Becoming aware of all these things particularly the things you have achieved no matter how small can give you the confidence you need to accomplish more.
Know your future self
Identifying your future self gives you a clear vision of your goal – the person you want to be. Can you envision yourself beyond a few weeks? Who will you be in two, five or even ten years?
Once you know that person, form a relationship with him and be guided by him. When you have a connection with your future self, you will have empathy for him. You will care for that person and do everything that is needed to turn your visions into reality.
See all the possibilities. Your future self is someone better than who you currently are. He loves resistance and is not afraid to express his uniqueness and stand up for himself and others.
Listen to your moral authority.
The courage to speak out revolves around what you want to say and who you really want to be. To know your message is to listen to your genius. Everyone was born with it. It is the moral authority, the voice within you that tells you to move forward and be the person you were meant to be.
The courage to speak out is to acknowledge and give that voice more attention. You also need to consider the quality of what you say to yourself and who it is that is speaking to you.
When you stop and listen you can hear the voice that does not want you to stand up and be rejected. It wants you to fit in, but there is also another part of you that says it is time to have courage.
Are you listening to the one you are familiar with, the one that wants to keep you where you are or are you listening to the voice that wants you to move forward, the one that wants you to grow and make an impact?
Ask yourself “What is the world asking me to do? What is the message the world wants me to impart?
Let the seed within you grow.
The seeds of success have been planted within you. It wants you to grow, flourish, and reach your full potential. Your life’s task is to bring that seed to life to express your uniqueness through your work.
The more you feel it and maintain it as a force the easier it will be for you to activate it. This force pushes you to find your voice, to act and to keep going.
Practice helps you develop the courage to speak out. Do it regularly until it becomes a habit. Becoming a habit makes the action automatic and thus easier to do.
If you really want something in life and you want something to be different to what it currently is then let your voice be heard. Be courageous enough to speak out.
Your voice matters, own it. Make your legacy, stand up for those who have no courage to speak for themselves.
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