Voice Your Heart: You Owe It to Yourself

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In today’s workplace, there are many people who think that the best way to advance in the work place is to be agreeable.

So many of us have swallowed our own voice for so long that we have forgotten what truth tastes like.

We are afraid to use our heart’s voice because:

We are afraid of being reprimanded. When we’re wrapped up in pleasing others, the idea that we will hear something harsh in return keeps us from speaking up.

We are afraid of rejection. The fear of rejection causes us to shy away from the risk of making waves, even when we realize trying to maintain the status quo is ultimately a losing proposition.

We are afraid of conflict. When we fear conflict, we avoid it at all cost—even at the price of our soul.  We tend to align ourselves only with those who think and believe as we do in order to avoid conflict. We think we are playing it safe, but are we?

We are afraid of being rude. But is it rude when we express ourselves, when we give our opinion? What an excellent thing to be as rude as that with our convictions.

We are afraid of being alienated. Nobody wants to be on on the outskirts, but when we don’t speak up we alienate ourselves from ourselves.

We are afraid of hurting people’s feelings. Empathy is a virtue, but when we’re overly empathetic we can lose our sense of self.

We are afraid of losing the approval of others. Many of us are people pleasers and want to please others at the expense of our own respect. It’s a basic human characteristic to want respect and acceptance.

There are many reasons why we don’t speak up or speak out.  But there is only one reason to speak from the heart.

The voice of the heart stems from our convictions. It allows others to see the character of who you are.

The mind is rational. It says that if we speak out we will be in trouble; if we state what we think there will be consequences.

The best insurance we can take out on our leadership is to invest in the message of our words, by voicing our heart.

We owe it to ourselves not to be afraid of our voice. It is not there to be silent.

It there to let us know that we have something worthwhile to say.

In our efforts to protect ourselves from pain, from fear, from sadness, from discomfort, from failure, from the parts of our life we have been conditioned to believe are dangerous or dark, we have stopped voicing our truth.

The masks we wear to protect ourselves are armors, but they don’t really protect us— they just numb us.

Voice your heart- you owe it to yourself not to be anesthetized, the truth isn’t always beauty, but the desire for it is.

Lead From Within:. Life is too precious to waste our time on not voicing our heart. Speak up today. Say what you mean and mean what you say.

 


 

N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

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Additional Reading you might enjoy:

 

Photo Credit: Getty Images


Lolly Daskal is one of the most sought-after executive leadership coaches in the world. Her extensive cross-cultural expertise spans 14 countries, six languages and hundreds of companies. As founder and CEO of Lead From Within, her proprietary leadership program is engineered to be a catalyst for leaders who want to enhance performance and make a meaningful difference in their companies, their lives, and the world.

Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.

33 Responses to “Voice Your Heart: You Owe It to Yourself”

  1. Alli Polin

    10. Dec, 2013

    Our heart knows what to say even when our head tells us to suck it up and play it safe. We need to empower our hearts to lead the way. Our heads are programmed to keep us safe, our hearts beat to build authentic connection as we truly show up in the world.

    Read this one a few times. Thanks, Lolly.

    Reply to this comment
  2. lollydaskal

    10. Dec, 2013

    Alli
    you summoned it up so beautifully, We need to empower our hearts to lead the way. Our heads are programmed to keep us safe, our hearts beat to build authentic connection as we truly show up in the world.

    Thanks for your truth, extremely insightful wisdom.

    Lolly

    Reply to this comment
  3. Martina

    10. Dec, 2013

    Great post Lolly. Yes, it is only in embracing and showing/ or voicing our hearts can we lead from our hearts and serve others well. Our heart and spirits instinctively know what should be said, what needs to be touched or mended and how.

    It is the interference of our minds and the attendant fear that gets in the way and holds us back.

    Our hearts know, and we must learn to pay much more attention to it.

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      11. Dec, 2013

      As always I appreciate your words. as always I look forward to your comments and you are so right.

      Our hearts know, and we must learn to pay much more attention to it.

      Great truth! Thanks for sharing Martina!

      Hope all is well with you.

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  4. Gloria Wilson

    10. Dec, 2013

    Lolly your message is strong and well written. It is so important to “Think with your mind but feel with the heart” ♥

    Reply to this comment
  5. Sharon Reed

    10. Dec, 2013

    Voicing our heart takes courage, but it’s the only true path to living fully authentic lives. Wonderful post, Lolly, and such an important message.

    Sharon

    Reply to this comment
  6. LaRae Quy

    10. Dec, 2013

    Bravo, Lolly…you know I love strong voices! A great post about the difference between timid and strong hearts.

    You hit the nail on the head with this: “We owe it to ourselves not to be afraid of our voice.”

    A strong heart has the confidence to express their voice with confidence. As you say, we owe it to ourselves.

    LOVE this post.

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      10. Dec, 2013

      LaRae,

      As you know, it takes mental toughness to speak up and it takes courage to voice your heart.

      LOVE when you wrote, A strong heart has the confidence to express their voice with confidence.

      SO TRUE
      Thanks for sharing.

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  7. Jacky

    10. Dec, 2013

    Our mind will never be able to outsmart our heart, no matter how hard we try. Our mind does not provide safety, only false illusions of distorted truths and it spins us in self fulfilling prophecies leading to conflict with self, others and loneliness. We need to learn not only to voice our heart freely but also to courageously align the consistency of our actions and behaviors with that voice. The last part is even more challenging: To be consistent in heart based action, behavior and intend. If voice and action are not aligned we all end up swirling around in endless confusion leading to breakdowns.

    Wishing you continued courage
    Jacky

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      11. Dec, 2013

      Our mind can outsmart our heart and it does most of the time – if we are not mindful.

      Our mind does not provide safety, but the illusion of safety.

      How can someone speak their truth when it remains unsafe- says the heart.

      How can you express what you mean, when it will get knocked down.

      How can one say what they mean, when it will get twisted into patterns.

      The best we can do for another —is to listen and to try to understand, if there is no heart to follow their is no mind to understand.

      We only need courage if there is no heart involved.

      Reply to this comment
  8. Karin Hurt

    10. Dec, 2013

    There is huge relief in speaking from your heart. Done well, you will deepen respect and the next time it will be easier. Often the consequences we image from telling our truth would not materialize in reality.

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      10. Dec, 2013

      Very well said, Karin.

      I appreciate your wisdom and insight!

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
    • scott moore

      11. Dec, 2013

      Karin and Lolly

      Lolly, this was an excellent post and I like how Karin worded her comment. In the work place you feel you have to choose your battles when you are trying to support a family.

      In many cases you won’t truly speak your heart unless you are personally cornered. Would the powers that be pull the plug on your paycheck with no real explanation for doing so? At times, your fears are unfounded. Fact is, if you can’t feel good about your own convictions in your workplace you need to find another workplace as soon as reasonably possible. I have been there at times. I have also seen people who feel they have no choice but to stay in a place that their convictions suffer.

      Reply to this comment
  9. Terri Klass

    10. Dec, 2013

    Our hearts are the most authentic organs in our bodies and will never lead us astray.
    Although our minds force us to behave in a certain way, we must remind ourselves that we must always turn to our hearts for guidance and confidence.
    That means our hearts will empower us to do what is best and right for ourselves.
    Definitely worth cultivating our heart muscles.
    Thanks for another brilliant post!

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      10. Dec, 2013

      Yes Terri how important to exercise our heart muscle.
      And most certainly we need .

      Speaking up and voicing from the heart is the deepest acceptance of life!

      Thanks Terri for sharing. You are an inspiration.
      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  10. Karen Jolly

    10. Dec, 2013

    Wonderful post Lolly – thank you! There is such a gift in allowing the voice of your heart to speak. So many of us have been taught to “be careful” with our words…so we hold back. This is especially true at work – we are afraid of the risk involved. But the truth is, if we speak from the heart, we are trusting that inner guidance that knows better than our heads.

    When I listen to my heart and give it voice, opportunities open and connections are made. What a gift!

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      10. Dec, 2013

      Great point Karen,

      its true at work – we are afraid of the risk involved. But the truth is, if we speak from the heart, we are trusting that inner guidance that knows better than our heads.

      and I believe that voicing from the heart of life is about the possibility of discovering that wholeness right now—not next year, not tomorrow , not “one day,” but right now,

      It is in the midst of the present experience, in the midst of whatever is happening, even if what’s happening is discomfort and pain is always longing to speak up.

      Thanks Karen for stopping by I love the way you think.

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  11. Panteli Tritchew

    10. Dec, 2013

    Such an important post and reminder to not take for granted one of our most important gifts, Lolly.

    Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights recognizes the right to freedom of expression as a human right.
    The First Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibits the making of any law that abridges the freedom of speech.
    Section Two of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms defines freedom of expression as a fundamental freedom.
    Article 11 of The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen (French Revolution) stated that “The free communication of ideas and opinions is one of the most precious of the rights of man.”
    When we self-curtail, self-abridge, and self-sensor our own voice, we betray ourselves. As you say, Lolly, “We owe it to ourselves not to be afraid of our voice. It is not there to be silent.”
    At some level, we also owe it to the broader community. These rights were codified in ink; they were earned in a liquid that comes from the heart.
    Thank you again,Lolly.

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      10. Dec, 2013

      Panteli,

      Freedom of speech and freedom of expression, are the fundamentals of our humanity.

      As you so beautifully stated, These rights were codified in ink; they were earned in a liquid that comes from the heart.

      Perhaps all-pervading freedom rests at the heart of everything, which will take us beyond the need for any external authority and leave you standing free, like a tree in a storm, facing life head on, fully engaged with the realities and challenges of our lives.

      Thanks SO much for sharing.

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  12. Dan Aldridge

    10. Dec, 2013

    Hi Lolly – My experience has been that #2 Fear of rejection is a real tough one to overcome. I was taught from an early age that if you don’t have anything positive to say, don’t say anything at all…be mindful of people’s feelings, etc. Quite a lot of history to overcome, but I agree that in order to make a true difference or change in the world, then you HAVE to speak your heart.

    It struck me that his is a timely post in the wake of Nelson Mandela passing. Where would South Africa, and really the world, be if he hadn’t had the courage to make his voice be heard?

    Love your post. Thanks, Lolly. 🙂

    Reply to this comment
    • lollydaskal

      11. Dec, 2013

      Just because we might not agree does not make it not positive.

      Just because we have a different opinion does not make it wrong.

      In life and in our leadership we must be able to express ourselves, in order to reveal who we are.

      When it is unsafe to speak. When its always knocked down or ridiculed we will stop expressing ourselves.

      Life is about expressing ourselves. the more we say the more we can be understood.

      Thanks so much for your thoughts Dan I appreciate you.

      Lolly

      Reply to this comment
  13. Garren Fagaragan

    10. Dec, 2013

    Lolly..this post reminded me
    of a story exemplifying our
    individual uniqueness.

    A youth minister held up his hand
    to his class and said…
    why do we have a thumbprint?

    A little girl responded…
    “Because you have a gift…and
    if you don’t give it…it will never
    be given.”

    How wonderful to confidently
    share our Unique voice authentically
    from our heart.

    Speak forth LeadFromWithin
    Leaders!…the world
    demands it.

    thanks Lolly for initiating a
    great thread.

    Reply to this comment
  14. lollydaskal

    10. Dec, 2013

    Garren

    Thank you so much for the story it does exemplify that we each matter, our voice, our heart, our truth.

    Thanks so much for sharing.

    Lolly

    Reply to this comment
  15. sridhar laxman

    11. Dec, 2013

    Lolly
    Thank you for your this wonderful post. You have put it so well
    ‘ life is too precious to waste our time on not voicing our heart’.

    Clients that I coach tell me time and again about the wonderful emotions they experience by consciously making efforts to speak up and voice their feelings, thoughts.
    More power to them!

    Reply to this comment
  16. Bill Benoist

    12. Dec, 2013

    Hi Lolly,

    What a great post.

    This is why it’s so important for leaders to create safe environments – so their employees do feel comfortable speaking from their hearts.

    Reply to this comment
  17. Ashutosh Kumar

    25. Aug, 2016

    Very nice post.. your writings are very inspirational and educative.

    Reply to this comment
  18. David Mbina

    14. Mar, 2018

    Lolly you are too much, as am typing this comment am doing it with tears because am just going through what you say on this post but with these am strong enough to say my heart ❤ thanks a lot

    Reply to this comment

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