I have over the time not found it easy to find my own voice.
When you grow up in an environment where it is said to you what is important and what not and what to think and how to think and what not, it is comfortable at first, well, for some people at least. I was more of a pain in the arse because I love to learn and speak about what I have found out and not everybody loved that. Especially when it contradicts with what you are told to believe or how to believe.
Having your own study and learning routine is something that seems really important to find your own voice.
The same things seems to be true about learning about the world around you. People can give many explanations of what is going on in the world but until you do your own research your enthusiasm will not be great. At least, that was how it was for me.
Because I grew up in this strict religion I was also bullied at school. That didn’t really help at all with finding my own voice, or did it?
The more I came across people that had an other view or opinion the more I can sharpen my opinion. The more I can see in contrast what my view of the world is and it becomes more and more defined.
But still, being bullied makes you feel like you don’t count and that your opinion and voice doesn’t count. You are an outsider. Sometimes it feels like you are becoming detached from your own life. You watch things develop like a movie. It’s a way of coping with your reality. I had to learn later that for every group you are an outsider for there is also a group that welcomes you. Sometimes it’s about finding the group that already wants to welcome you instead of trying to fit in with those that don’t want you.
There are groups and people that like the same things that you do and love doing the same things you do and with social media, they become easier and easier to find.
Facebook helped me a great deal in difficult times because I found it very difficult to come home from a day of school being bullied sometimes and find that nobody at homes seems to understand you and no matter what you do you always seem to get in a conflict, how good intended you start out.
You start to doubt yourself. You start to once again want to fade out.
Some friends on Facebook really helped me by being there to talk to and being understanding. It made me feel like I was not going crazy, it was not only my fault. Those people gave me during tough times something to hold on to. So if you are one of those people, you know who you are. Thank you so much.
People give Social media such a hard time for making people lives worse and more anti-social but it is all about how you use it.
I had to learn to take responsibility without beating myself up for part of the results of my interactions and communication. I loved learning from people that did extraordinary things and were able to influence people around them.
Learning about psychology and NLP Neuro Linguistic Programming was not only to influence people around me but also to learn even more about myself. Know thyself, as they say.
“Know thyself” is still one one the greatest things you can do in your life that will drastically change your life for the better. Learn to know yourself better and be honest with yourself. We are great in deceiving ourselves but the more honest we can be with ourselves the easier everything else in your life will become.
The more you know yourself the more you can express yourself.
One other thing that really helped me find my voice is loving art and doing artful things, like writing and drawing.
Knowing yourself better and better and doing artful things go hand in hand. It will create more ways of expressing yourself and finding new ways to express yourself will give you more ways to know yourself.
Do your art for yourself and if there is an audience, good, you can share it but do it in the first place for yourself.
That brings me to yet another powerful way I learned to express myself: Learning that sharing your life experiences and how you overcame your challenges can help other people too. Even when you still have challenges, sharing that with other people that have the same kind of challenges will let them know that they are not alone in their fight and your experiences can broaden their insight into their challenges may be. Be careful nevertheless not to share your challenges with just everybody.
To joy and fulfillment of teaching other people and helping other people is, for me at least, enormous. It also a very great way to broaden your own possibilities of using your own voice.
I hope that this helped you and inspired you in some way.
Let your voice be heard!
Pic: “Schreeuwen / Schreeuw / Shouting / Shout” by Sebastiaan ter Burg is licensed under CC BY 2.0