Tell the truth...
We are taught this from the time we are able to understand what these words mean. Chances are, you require this very act from your own children and those around you, I know I sure do. However, at some point as we are growing up, the lines get blurred between telling the truth and speaking your truth.
Why and how does this happen? Did you ever hear the quote...
If you don't have anything nice to say then don't say it at all
In my opinion, this statement is where I believe the programming begins. I'm pretty sure most kids are told this because being nice is the focus here, not necessarily being truthful. Yet, isn't that what we all want? The TRUTH?
Don't go around being hurtful...
Clearly I am not suggesting everyone start spouting hurtful things out into the world, we already have more than enough of that. My point here is that we have suppressed our own truths strictly because we do not want to hurt another. This is very admirable while at the same time hurtful... TO YOU!
What is happening inside?
When you make the decision to not speak up, to not say what is true for you, your physical body gets tense am I right? You know that in times when you should say what you feel, or share your own perspective with another and you decide to pass, you feel completely unsettled. You feel uneasy. Your stomach feels rumbled, you feel a lump in your throat, and your chest feels heavy. Other symptoms of not speaking up may look like jaw pain (TMJ), headaches, shoulder and neck pain among others.
So what do you do?
I am continuously surprised by women who do not understand the difference between assertiveness and confrontation. I need to say something here.
Speaking your truth is NOT being confrontational...
its just not
If you are someone who believes that when you speak your truths, when you tell the truth, it causes confrontation, then please let me tell you that another person's reaction to you speaking your truth is not a situation you need to join. Just because someone may react to you speaking your own truth, does not mean you need to react to their reaction... make sense? But you still need to speak your truth!
When you speak your truth, you take a journey within. You find a part of you that you didn't know was there. You dive deeper into who you are in your soul. We have to get comfortable going within, of exploring more of ourselves.
Take the 1st step...
Think of something right now that is weighing on your heart. Close your eyes and allow your body to feel. Feel all the places that your body is holding onto this feeling of constriction. Who is the person who is involved with this feeling of heaviness on your heart? Write in your journal exactly what you would like to say to them, everything, all your feelings.
Now, contact someone in your close circle and ask for help. Schedule a time to get together with this supportive person, or at the very least Facetime so that you can see them. Tell this supportive person you have a situation in which you need their help, to assist you in speaking your truth. This supportive person is NOT the actual person you need to speak your truth to... this is role play.
You will role play with your supportive friend. She/he will sit in front of you, saying absolutely nothing, just listening to everything you need to say. Allow all your emotions to come forth. Say everything that needs to be said. Your supportive friend is not there to comfort you, she is there to be present for you. You are doing all the talking, she is listening.
Next, break down everything you wrote and role played with your supportive friend. Shorten it to the facts. Take out some of the emotion, and begin to see the facts from your perspective. You are going to re-write it. Include mainly facts, and only some emotion. Write as if you are speaking to this person directly in front of you again.
Here it goes.
You have wrote out everything that needs to be said, role played with your supportive friend, re-wrote your truths with the focus on factual perspectives, leaving in some emotion... NOW call or meet with the person who you actually need to speak your truth. Take your paper, there is no shame in reading exactly what needs to be said. You do not have to rehearse this. Just read it.
Choose to stay or go.
Depending on the intensity of your truth speaking, you can stay or you can voice it and leave (in a respectable manner). Your choice. CHOICE - its yours. But remember this, their reaction is not about you, its about them. You are simply speaking your truth, telling your truths. It does not neccesarily mean it is their truth though ~ keep that in mind. But that is ok. You still need to speak it.
Now you have empowered yourself in taking the 1st step in finding your voice.