Oh boy, did I have a 'voice' as a kid! I loved to talk, and I loved to state my opinions. Yet, little did I know at the time, that "my opinions" weren't all coming from my TRUE VOICE. Instead, some of my opinions were borrowed from the people around me; my parents, my mentors, and society at large. This left me with a major challenge: I was scared to speak in front of the class, and scared to appear on video! At first, it seems ironic that I ended up as a TV presenter. Yet, at the same time it makes a lot of sense because our voids drive us to finding what we really value. My career has been a life lesson in finding my TRUE VOICE.
During college, when I was on my own, I started to challenge my beliefs and my voice was temporarily quieted. As I continued to listen to the voices of others, I noticed that my TRUE VOICE was meek and shy. Why was it so hard to speak up? Why was it so hard to say no? Was my opinion based on my truth? Or was I trying to please someone else by agreeing with them. At some point in life, we all face the challenge of finding our TRUTH and SPEAKING UP about it.
As a professional, I use my voice to communicate through video. I speak on behalf of a company, product, or business (which is a great service as long as I am internally aligned with the message). I remember the first job I had that I wish I hadn't taken… It was an infomercial for a product that didn't even work. UGH, the agony of praising a product that was a piece of junk! Regardless, I chose to wear my 'professional hat' and finish the job I was paid for. From that day forward, I made the conscious effort to align myself with projects that were something I believed in.
Even in my 30's, I am still continuing to strengthen my TRUE VOICE. And more importantly, I am learning to fully respect the voices of those around me. We all have our INNER TRUTH which is something that deserves respect on both sides of the spectrum.
Here are some things I've learned about finding your TRUE VOICE.
1. How do I know my truth? Whether you are, or are not, speaking your truth, you can "FEEL" it. Notice and pay attention. Where are you speaking from… your heart or your mind? What is your intention… to persuade someone, or to be honest with where you stand? Pay attention to the physical response.
2. How do I speak my truth without offending someone? My best strategy for speaking my truth is starting with this phrase… "The truth for me is…" This opens up the conversation in a non-confrontational manner, and usually sets the stage for having your opinion respected.
3. How do I develop confidence in my message? It takes vulnerability to say your truth. You might be judged… heck, you WILL be judged! No matter what you say, someone out there is bound to disagree with you. So who cares! Do what you are inspired to do. When speaking on camera, direct your attention through that lens and connect with your ideal listener. Ask yourself, how can my message help someone in need? CONNECT and SERVE. Its that simple. The value of maximizing your reach with video is priceless.
4. Practice makes perfect. Write/blog about your message. This is a great way to connect and speak from your heart and get your "scripts" solid. Then, get out and share your message in public. It can be as simple as having the conversation in social situations, or speaking to small groups. You will get better with time, and before you know it, you will be impressed with yourself. Don't over-think it, just do it!
5. Look at the big picture and connect with your heart. When you look at the world at large, what role do you play in it? Discover your life mission. When you look back at your life at age 90, what will you be most proud of? What will you think life is really all about? What kind of legacy will you leave for generations to come? If you set the intention, the gifts you bring to the world will have a lasting effect, and you will be immortalized. PLAY BIG and your message will come easily.