3 STEPS TO FIND YOUR VOICE (AND THE REAL YOU, ALONG THE WAY)
“The only thing you have that nobody else has, is you. Your voice, your mind, your story, your vision.”
When I began writing for myself, I struggled so hard to find my voice.
The typical insecurities tormented this novice creative every time she braved the harsh glare of the empty digital canvas.
What do I want to say?
Do I even have any value to add?
Will anybody care?
I strongly suspected not.
When I did write, it was in battle against my smack-talking mean girl.
At this point, I was just trying to keep my self-worth in tact — let alone write freely or, God forbid, enjoy the process of creating.
If you’re a creator (of any kind) who is battling these familiar foes and feel frustrated or confused about where and how to discover your own voice, I come with hopeful news:
There is a way to connect with your authentic truth and bring it forth creatively.
In fact, I’m now guiding women to be, live, act, speak and create from their authentic truth — to find their own voice.
Firstly, it’s a process of self-discovery.
Secondly, it’s about having a mindset that can beat the feisty internal assassins, who, if untamed, will spook your True Self back into hiding before she’s coughed up her first sentence.
Be fascinated in who you are
To find your voice, you’ve got to become insatiably curious about who you are.
What topics or people turn you on?
What pulls on your heartstrings?
What erupts that urgent sense of injustice in you?
What stories or experiences make you feel so freaking alive?
Finding your voice requires exactly that — discovering and then excavating the essence that lives in you: in your interests, your inclination and your innate desires.
A common misunderstanding is that we need to create our voice, but we don’t. We learn to draw it out, inch by inch, just by being present to and interested in ourselves.
If you tune in and pay close attention to yourself, you will awaken to a perspective and a message that is unmistakably yours to express.
Tips to become re-fascinated in you
- What captivates you? Do you have any repetitive thoughts or desires?
- What frustrates you? What gives you hope?
- What do you have random inspirations about?
Find your through-line
Our through-line is the common (usually unconscious) theme that is present in all of our choices and our creative work. It’s what drives you. And in order to fully develop your unique voice, you have to understand what drives you.
Identifying your through-line will help you distil your why and your message right down. I recently discovered mine and it has been game changing.
Here’s how it happened: three months back I decided to trawl through my old blog posts. My intention was mostly procrastination and so I anticipated zero revelations. To my total surprise, each post shared one undeniable common theme. You guessed it: discovering your own voice.
Tips to help identify your through-thread
- Keep a journal or diary
Flick back through it every couple of months, and with a highlighter, note common, recurring themes. They’re clues.
- Remember your three favourite conversations of all time
Who were you taking to? What were you talking about?
- Get a friend to mock interview you or do it in private
This will force you to tell your story. The language and events you choose to communicate will help you to identify important patterns and themes.
Take action and be patient
If you practice the above two techniques regularly, a lot of fog that lingers around your ‘why’ and your message will start to lift. Developing your magnificent voice necessitates more than self-understanding. We also need to share ourselves consistently (before we think we’ve got it all figured out!).
Please remember that anybody who has developed their voice and style to a level you admire has waded through the very same insecurities as you and I. Their focus has drifted and their enthusiasm totally conked out. So keep writing, speaking, risking, sharing and taking action. And be patient with the meandering process of stumbling into your unique voice.