Recently I participated in a Twitter chat. By participate I mean I answered one question (I planned on discussing more but I was distracted and ended up forgetting to*.)
*happens way too often to me
So moving on. I’ll paraphrase one of the questions asked.
“If you aren’t getting the attention of your audience/followers what are some ways you can stand out?”
I answered, “Do what your competitors are doing or better yet improve on what they’re doing.”
In hindsight, which is always 20/20 my answer would be somewhat different. I think I’d say, “Be authentic! Don’t be afraid to use your voice! Yes, improve or do as your competitors/peers do but sprinkle yourself on top! It’s easy to get caught up in the currents of messages or lost in the noise but you’ve got something working for you that others don’t.”
(Doesn’t quite fit Twitter’s 140 character limit)
YOU!! No one else is you! They can copy, copy & paste parts of you but they’ll never be who you are! I know. I know. People say this so often.
Well, it’s the truth.
Someone I consider a friend always says,
The world is waiting for your words
She’s right! You never know what someone needs to hear. The very thing you’re holding inside can be the very thing someone needs to hear/see. By you not speaking, writing or however you convey your message may be starving someone who may hunger for exactly that!
I’d been discouraged to speak;growing up my voice was (and as an adult still is) different. Some may call it childish and soft in tone. In my teenage years my voice didn’t change in volume or in any other way. I visited the school nurse constantly to find out if I had a hearing issue. I’d always pass the test. I never felt comfortable answering questions in classes (especially when some teachers and students didn’t respond too well when they had trouble hearing me). Over the past few years I’ve been getting more comfortable with talking to others. Recently, a few friends (2 of which are podcasters) have made me rethink my choice of not using my voice. I mean it was given to me specifically. Why not use it?
Fun fact: I have a college degree in (wait for it) Communication. 😄 (How that came to be is another blog post)
As I’m getting (somewhat) more comfortable with using my voice I see it as something dangerous. Ah yes, the title of this post. Dangerous because it’s stepping out of my comfort zone. Even blogging is stepping out of my comfort zone. Yes. Conveying this very message is out of my comfort zone!
So I challenge anyone reading this to do something dangerous. Do something that makes you feel alive. Do something that surprises YOU. Do it for yourself!