Voice as an offering…
This has come up so much lately. Perhaps it’s because so many feel compelled to speak yet are afraid to do so. Still others are even more afraid to sing. Fear of imperfection was sited by one colleague this week, and intolerance and decreased civility when sharing one’s opinions was the focus of another.
I’d like you to consider that physiologically humans shouldn’t be able to sing, we shouldn’t even be able to speak, but we do. To put it simply, humans have two flaps of cartilage stretched over our windpipe and this is how we create sound, words, songs, cries, screams, embryonic hums and the most sophisticated theories are voiced by the same mechanism.
Voice is a delicate instrument. It is also incredibly strong. It is a miracle and when used properly, changes lives for the better. The voice of Oprah Winfrey is changing lives. Most recently, her speech at the Golden Globe Awards brought inspiration to many as she encouraged everyone to speak their truth with confidence.
This weekend we honor and remember one of the most eloquent, passionate and empowered voices of our time, The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I can guarantee that my social media will be flooded with both his words in print and his voice in recordings. It happens every year. The miraculous legacy of his voice lives on.
Which leads me to my story this week…
It was about six years ago that I met a gifted artist, a painter by trade, with one of the biggest hearts you could imagine. He was well known and traveled in famed circles. He is gone from us a year this month yet I still remember the first thing he said to me, “You’re gonna save a lot of lives with the voice, young lady.”
We were at an art event for a charity organization we both volunteered for, helping build bridges in our communities through the arts. Being a voice strategy coach and performer, I knew well the joy of seeing others bloom. Still, he saw beyond. He saw the power and influence I held far more than I ever had.
He was right. I do save lives. I save careers. I save at risk kids. I save fearful adults. I am an alchemist. I research, I study, I experiment on myself, and I use my skills and influence to transform technical material and high level concepts into every day language and situations as a way to spark positive change in others.
I am successful because I have been there. Before I could save anyone else, I needed to “save” myself; from a career ending injury in my twenties through surviving the many physical trials related to autoimmune disease. My voice, meaning my inner compass and its outward expression, pulled me back toward life when, at times, I thought death would be a blessing.
Putting all of my skills together, I learned again, I researched more, I went back to what I was taught as a teenager and university student, and when doors closed and board certified professionals with more letters after their names than you can count, told me I was crazy; I persisted.
My Voice Saved My Life.
I am one of the lucky ones. I have a great supportive family who love me even though I’m the “witchy” sister, who loves crystals, reads oracle cards and tarot, and practices reiki. I am an aging showgirl with grit, who was raised with a lot of faith and strong connection to her higher power.
Those who share the stage with me often notice I go off by myself before the show starts. There, I give thanks for the opportunity to entertain, to brighten the audiences life for a bit, and perhaps inspire the next generation of performers and theatergoers.
I consider my voice to be an offering. A blessed and sacred offering, shared in song, in story, in print here on my blog, and now more often through video. So is yours.
Think about it for a moment…
How would you use your voice if you considered it a sacred offering?
Would you raise your voice against injustice? Would you speak your mind with dignity and respect? Would you be brave enough to show the world who you really are, then inspire and encourage others to do the same? Would you rise to the occasion when difficult things need to be said? Would you refuse to dominate the conversation through vocal attack?
How would your life change if you became the empowered voice?
The empowered voice is fiery yet tempered with compassion. The empowered voice maintains respect for one’s boundaries and those of others. The empowered voice is effective and persuasive, which is not to be confused with weak or manipulative. The empowered voice is the voice of the heart speaking its truth with intelligence and courage.
When those who are marginalized are attacked, neglected or ignored, it is the empowered voice that carries the day, moves us forward toward positive change and saves lives well into the future.
How would your life change if every interaction, in person or online, embodied the sacred offering of your empowered voice?
Struggling to make it through the day at work, or an evening performance, I can help.
Contact me to schedule a voice strategy assessment today!
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