Break Down Barriers: Share your voice!

Sure, we’ve all been in the room with someone who just won’t stop talking, whether at work, in a meeting, out in public or among friends. The voice in our head says, “I don’t wanna be that person. I will hold my tongue.”

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Yet doing so allows “that person” to continue monopolizing the speaking platform.

Many of us have exhausted simple behaviors such as staring at the floor, looking at our watch, or even clearing our throat. For thoughtful talkers, these behaviors work but for those speakers we get really frustrated with, basically because they appear to care only about themselves and their own ideas, these passive actions do no good.

As my mother has told me, “how do I know you what’s in your head if you don’t share it?” This is good advice for most of us. Yet for the timid or unpracticed, the act of sharing means we must suffer through having the spotlight on us.

Well, fellow business owners and service professionals, I learned that in business, if I don’t speak up (during meetings, while networking, at CLE’s or with clients), at the end of the day not only do I regret my actions, my results are dismal.

What Our Barriers/Silence Means

Being silent means I am friendly but not purposeful.

Being silent means I listen but have no mind to give meaningful feedback.

Being silent means I am not observant or concerned about people around me.

Being silent means I am selfish about constructive feedback or support.

Being silent means I don’t care about prospects enough to engage them in my services.

Our silence means other things as well, but I guess you get the point.

What to do?

Sharing your voice is critical for developing relationships, for demonstrating how you think and for showing how you operate.  The fact that it isn’t easy shouldn’t preclude us from speaking up. Was law school easy? The bar exam?

You may say, speaking doesn’t come naturally to me. Actually, speaking DOES come naturally to all of us, unless we have no voicebox. It’s our attitude that stands in the way.

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Then, lead from what the speaker has offered to how you would like to contribute. The earlier speaker will feel affirmed and your ideas will get air as well. At the end of the day, you will have no regrets about holding back.

When you want assistance in how to hone your message, how to communicate something you think people feel the opposite about, or how to still your nerves as you stand up to speak, let me know.

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On January 22nd, 2013, posted in: confidence, silence, speaking up by