Having a voice is one of the most empowering experiences, yet as we get older we tend to lose sight of this. We have likely had many experiences over the years where the words we share are meet with judgement, criticism or an unpleasant outcome. This is all part of life, and these experiences help us to learn and grow as a person, but what happens when we start to believe that it is safer to say nothing rather than speak our truth?
Each time we do not say what we feel or think, another moment of authenticity is lost. Our authentic self is not acknowledged and we can lose our ability to tell our truth honestly, openly, and freely. This can lead to our self-esteem being chipped away at…bit by bit.
"If you want to improve your self-esteem, simply be as honest as you can be about who you are, and how you feel. The way to feel better is to feel heard, and to feel heard, you have to speak your truth." - Bryant McGill
Your true voice is not anything you have to seek out or find. It’s with you all the time. All you need to do is let go of needing to seek approval from others, worrying about what other people will think or walking on eggshells around others for fear of the outcome.
"When you speak your truth, it's not about changing the other persons' mind or seeking their approval for your opinion. After all, we can't control other people's reactions to our actions. Speaking your truth is purely about being true to you." - Unknown
I know it is easier said than done and to be honest it isn't a skill I have mastered. Interestingly though, it is not the times that I failed to be authentic and speak my truth that sticks in my mind. More so, it's the times when I was courageous enough to speak my truth, no matter how hard it seemed at the time. I now know that I am suppressing my voice, and therefore not being my authentic self, when I get a knot in my stomach, a sore throat or I go to bite my tongue (so to speak). I am learning to act on these physical responses and to then choose to simply speak my truth.
Speaking your truth happens by paying attention to your physical responses, your gut feeling, and allowing that truth to be spoken. The next time you think of something to say that you know is true for you and your mind tells you, "You can't say that!" ignore your mind and say it anyway, always remembering to do so in a respectful way.
"You know, when you're real and speak your truth (in respectful ways), people won't always like you but you'll like you" - Robin Sharma
Speaking your truth isn’t always easy. It’s a daily practice that gets easier over time. It gets easier because you can end your day knowing you’ve been loyal to your authentic self. In that, there is freedom, happiness, and more energy to put towards living a more fulfilling life.