When we allow our voice to be silenced, such as I did for many years because I felt invisible and of no worth, we allow others to become our voice.
Others end up speaking for us by deciding how we feel because we don’t express how we feel. Others decide what we believe because we don’t express what we believe.
Others sometimes react to our silence as if we had spoken volumes.
Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
How we feel and what we believe are things that matter.
Sometimes we need to speak up and don’t.
Maybe we are scared, lack confidence, or are uncomfortable.
We sometimes silence ourselves when we fear damaging a relationship or feel the other person doesn’t want to hear what we have to say.
SILENCE IS GOLDEN
There are times when silence really is golden. There are times when it’s best to keep our mouth shut. There are times we don’t want to put our foot in our mouth.
These are all true.
More often, and more importantly, there are too many times we allow our voice to remain silent. Now is the time we must find our voice and share it in a way others can understand what we’re saying and what we hope to communicate.
YOU CAN FIND YOUR VOICE
Every voice matters. Your voice. My voice. Even the guy down the street who you don’t know that well. Even his voice matters.
For you who feel your voice is stuck in silent mode, as mine once was, I offer a few thoughts directly from Deepak Chopra, MD, for finding your voice when you feel invisible. I quote him verbatim so you can receive the full impact.
Step 1: Take responsibility. It’s too easy to blame others, and that never works. Even the people who are closest to you aren’t responsible for how you feel. By taking responsibility, you can completely turn your perspective around. “My kids never call anymore” can be turned into “I’m glad my kids don’t feel burdened by me.”
Step 2: Look at your situation objectively. Most of us get wrapped up in our own emotions, and when you feel resentful, alone or anxious, you are too vulnerable to do what you need to do. Try looking at your situation as if it’s not happening to you but to a friend who has asked you for advice.
Step 3: First, sit down with a pencil and paper and make a list of situations where you feel invisible. At parties? At home? With friends? At restaurants? With younger people? With couples? With your family? At work? Now make three columns. The first column will include things you really want to change. The second will include things you want to change but feel slightly less urgent about. The third is the place for things that it would be nice to change but that aren’t crucial or don’t need to be addressed right this second. Now, insert each of the situations into the proper column.
Step 4: Wait a day or two, and then return to your list to check if you still agree with the priorities you set down. It also helps, at this point, to consult a confidante. Don’t pick a friend or family member who will try to pooh-pooh your problem and tell you that everything’s fine. (They will secretly think you are trying to guilt trip them.) Also avoid people who are in the habit of telling others what they want to hear. The best choice is someone who has experienced the same situation that you are in and has successfully found a solution.
Step 5: Make an action plan for each of your columns. This is necessary even if column #3–something it would be nice to change–doesn’t feel like a pressing issue. The point of this step is to exercise your imagination. The more ideas you can devise, the freer you can be from getting stuck. Write down as many creative solutions as you can think of. Take your time. There’s no deadline, and you can return to this step over a few days if that’s what it takes. Feel free to brainstorm with other people, making sure that they realize your intention isn’t to lean on them but to arrive at your own independent solution.
POWER OF THREE ACTION STEPS
- How can you do something with what you have learned today?
- How can you use this to help another?
- Will you?
The Story You Most Consistently Tell Yourself Will Be The Story To Most Consistently Come True In Your Life. Create A Beautiful, Powerful, Wonderful Story!
I love you my friends!
Have a great Monday! Thanks for letting me share.
p.s. Take 13 minutes today to focus on your Power Of Three action steps.
Photo by Maria Krisanova on Unsplash
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