As I talk with leaders, I’ve been noticing how often I say, “Have you written about that?”
This week, it happened every day as I coached executive directors leading arts organizations around the country, as I facilitated this month’s Create Your Dream Career Impact Intensive,and as I talked with new friends in Santa Barbara!
I kept witnessing unique value being softly (even sometimes dismissively) expressed and I was compelled to ask, “Wow. I’ve never heard that before. How are you sharing these insights, perspectives, ideas and questions with others so that they can benefit?”
More often than not, there was silence, followed by “I’m not a writer.” Or “What I just said is so simple or obvious – it’s not really that big of a deal.”
The exciting thing is that what often seems so simple or obvious to you – and you may not put much value in it – is the exact perspective and insight that someone else may be feeling but hasn’t yet been able to articulate. It may be a missing piece of information or approach someone need for things to fall into place in their lives or transform their business, or to feel greater connection to the world knowing they are not the only ones feeling the way they do.
Finding our voice, knowing what we have to say, and why – and valuing that – can be a challenge, and can require breaking through limiting beliefs and assumptions about all sorts of things internally and externally (and that’s a whole different topic!).
Sharing our voice so that others may be lifted up and helped in some way, is part of our purpose. Some will say, therefore, it is our responsibility to share our unique voice.
There are limitless ways to do this.
“All” you have to do is look for ways to express yourself authentically, with the intention to help others. NOTE: knowing that people need your voice (They do!) can often help you take the first courageous steps into vulnerability.
However, its easy to become paralyzed in the how – perhaps thinking that sharing your voice means you must deliver a keynote speech, write a book, have a TV show, create a movement, perform on stage, or launch a podcast. Doing these things may indeed be in your future – but that’s irrelevant for now. When you are beginning this journey it may be helpful to simply begin in the present moment. That is always the place to start.
Observe and notice what you are thinking as you move through your day. Observe and notice what occurs to others when you show up fully present. Value what you notice. Value the patterns you see. Value your ability to see paths forward, or to see that seemingly disparate things are connected, or your ability to make things easier for others, or to make someone feel good.
Share what you observe and notice – even if you don’t yet know what it all means. What you notice is part of your unique value. Trust it.
Along the way, find the unique language and medium that supports your unique voice. Having clarity in what we (really) want to say and why, and then determining the best way to say it so that others can hear, is an important component to having the impact we are meant to have.
What are the ways you share your voice? Here’s a few ideas:
- When posts appear in your social media feed, what do you choose to share with your followers – and why?
- Write your own posts about a recent thought, insight or question – and state your intention for doing so (what do you want the impact to be – for you and for others?).
- Listen beyond the words being spoken during conversations and in meetings – what do you see? Why is that important to you?
- Share your voice in meetings, conversations – again with intention. Try these prompts:
- “I find xx so interesting, because…”
- “Today I noticed…”
- “I recommend…”
- “I am…” (describe who you are in terms of the impact you bring.)
- Write a poem, sing a song, paint, build, dance, show up. You can begin alone. Observe and notice how you feel, as well as the ripples of impact that occur. Talk about it – enroll and engage others.
Self-expression feels good. And, as you connect to your true value and notice your impact, momentum builds, your voice and message become clear, your ripples of impact expand, and you make the world a better place.
How will you share your voice today?
To your success,
If you are at a crossroads of some kind and wanting a guide, I’m opening registration for my 6-month VIP Leadership Mastermind that begins in December 2018. If you’re ready to take action and make 2019 your year, schedule a 1:1 call with me HERE.