He said it again!! - Lora was screaming on the phone, - he raised his arm during the meeting and said: “It doesn’t make sense” in the middle of my point. AGAIN!
- It’s frustrating,- I said, and to help Lora detach from emotions, I reminded her about the checkpoints of expressing her opinion we discussed during our last session, - What was your intention?
- Well.. he clearly was wrong so I was trying to show… oh… is that what we talked about? I haven’t really expressed my opinion, just wanted to prove him wrong! Daaammit
- Have you gone into all the details before sharing the main point?
- Definitely… I was telling story after story, it all led to what I was trying to say, but it’s not the best order, is that?
- Details are important, but often we get distracted by them.
- Oh, I definitely do... I always try to say too many things at once, but honestly, some of them aren’t important to me... I just feel I have to explain myself. So values?
-Right. When you’re clear on what you stand for, it helps you to express yourself clearly, even if a topic isn’t directly connected with what you value the most, you have a structure that your brain rely on.
- Now it makes sense…although it’s not an excuse for his behavior today, I get it.
Lora continued practicing 5 keys to expressing herself with heart and integrity. She is feeling much more confident now, speak up more often and noticed her opinions are more valued and heard.
People not just hear what you say, but sense and react to your energy, an intention that was behind these words or actions.
What is intention? It is the why behind, the deep course of what we do or say.
In situations where you’re scared to be disliked or don't have enough confidence to speak up, you can overcome fear by stepping into the situation with the right intention.
Well, if your intention is to prove that you’re right then people will feel it and react with defense or aggression.
On the other hand, If you step in a conversation with a genuine intention to improve a situation for everyone, even if feedback might be not easy for the other person and reaction is unpredictable, he/she will feel that you come from a place of heart eventually. And what is more important you’re clear about the energy you bring to the situation. When you're clear about your intention, you eliminate guilt or confusion. You express yourself confidently as you know your heart is in a right place.
But if after speaking up you still have doubts or come back to guilt or discomfort, you just remind yourself that being truly helpful and mindful is more important than being liked. And this is where you come from. This is what your heart desires.
Being truly helpful and mindful is more important than being liked.
It extends the intention part. As simple as it is when you act with love and remind yourself that you do, you can stop your guilt or worry about saying something wrong before you jump on a worry train. If you doubt whether you should speak up or not, remind yourself, that any word said with the intention of love matters. You never know what a significant impact your words can have in your life or someone else's.
A recent example, I had a concern that was worrying me for a while. Although I never told anyone about it, I was talking with my friend one day and she expressed what she thought, it was just one sentence, but it made my heart stop for a second. It was the answer I was looking for. The issue was too private to ever ask, but thanks to the organizing power of the Universe I found my peace. Interestingly, my friend probably won't remember saying it, but it meant a world to me.
Whenever we feel tension about expressing something, it's good to refocus our attention on an inner state. Everything comes from the inside. If you can manage your inner state when you talk, the tone of your voice and the words you choose will be much more appealing. The question is: how to focus on the inner state?
Here are the simple ideas that can help:
- Deep breathing
- Heart breathing (take several breathes through your heart)
- Refocus your attention on your heart and "see" how energy goes through you
When I feel the tension to speak up, I close my eyes for 10 seconds on a meeting or excuse myself to the bathroom and take a minute to do deep breathing. It is proven to have an enormous effect on our nervous system, it helps to focus on a right outcome.
When you express your opinion, start with the main point.
What exactly are you trying to say? Then you can unfold it, explain the details. Why is it important?
Often it takes lots of twists and turns for a woman to express what she means. Well... Because, DETAILS matter!! But as understanding as our girlfriends are, people are impatient when they listen (men in particular). There is a big chance you'll be interrupted before you come to the main idea, as the result you hear something like: "Oh.. it doesn't make sense". It affects our self-esteem, of course, we don't want to speak up when we hear it all the time! Especially from men. Their brain works differently, so it is harder for them to be attentive to details, men are more focused on the end result. Does it make you feel even worse when they reply to your point: "So what are you trying to say...?" Well... when you were speaking for some time, it's annoying!
But when you respect our differences and start with the main point, it makes your opinions more valued and heard.
Harward Business School Professor expressed it beautifully in her research on a topic, find her inspiring Ted talk here.
Have you ever regretted saying something? Or had the voice inside, telling you'll regret if you speak up? This what often stops us from saying anything at all.
That's why it is so important to identify and have clear values for your communication: a clear understanding of what You stand for.
When You know that your decision to express your opinion and risk "being a bitch" in someone's eyes is based on a strong foundation of clarity and a sincere will to change a situation for better You have no place for doubts inside.
Be clear about your values. What do you stand for? What changes do you want to make? What is your global vision?
Ask Yourself: do these particular actions (even if it is critical feedback) bring you closer to the better future you want to see for yourself and others?
Check with yourself.
Intuition is a deal breaker in understanding your values. To start with developing Your intuition => Intuitive Planning
Hope it was helpful!
Love and Light,
P.S. To develop more confidence and learn speaking up try S.P.I.R.I.T. formula course, the 6-step program that has more than 1000 happy members.