Three Inspiring Talks about Silence, Speaking Up, and Finding Your Voice

I can be talkative at times. But I have trouble speaking up. I hadn’t really thought about how different those two things can be until I observed that I tend to opt for silence when I’m unsure about the things I’m about to say. I didn’t like to sound stupid or to be that only person in a room that has a different take on things. I didn’t want to invite attention to myself lest it will put me in trouble. I may have felt safe in my silence. But it didn’t make me happy. In fact, I’ve discovered that being quiet about the things that matter to me made me miserable.

Over the years, I learned that silence is powerful only if the situation calls for it. But it can be a problem when effectively communicating my views can potentially make a positive influence. I’m learning to allow myself to be heard, if needed. I figured that I have something to contribute as much as everyone else. I realized that no matter how difficult it may seem, finding your voice and using it to speak up can equally be powerful as silence. Here are some of the inspiring videos I’ve seen about topics that encourage people to share their truths:

Clint Smith: The danger of silence

“Read critically. Write consciously. Speak clearly. Tell your truth.”

This short video shows how choosing to be silent is not always a good thing. It made me think that silence can make me part of a problem. It is like a tacit approval on what people may be doing that go against my beliefs and values. By not speaking up, I’m empowering abuse and injustice that I may be a witness to.

Saying the Hard Things: The Power of Speaking Up | Amanda Springob

Just imagine how many problems we can prevent if only we’re brave enough to say the hard things. But not many people go down that road. This is why groupthink exists. It feels more comfortable and safer to just agree with what everyone else is saying. Going with the flow doesn’t require much energy. Not many people want to be that person who’d speak up about the toughest things to say. But it might just be what’s needed to avoid problems.

Susan Cain: The power of introverts

As an introvert, I really don’t like being on the spotlight. I work best behind the scenes and as far away as possible from prying eyes. But being quiet has its own power as this video shows. It’s a matter of harnessing the unique qualities that make us introverts different and tap on that to achieve the results we want.

Travel If You Want to Grow

Anyone who has traveled has been changed by it. Some may not be aware of it, but setting out to unfamiliar places shakes you up in subtle and not-so subtle ways. Every trip for me triggers a mix of emotions. Anticipation, excitement, fear, and worry are just some of the feelings I get before, during, and sometimes after my travels. If you ask me why I subject myself to such emotions, I’d say it’s for the experiences that traveling brings. There are always takeaways. And I feel that I’m also leaving parts of myself in places I go. It makes me understand myself and the outside world more.

Travel Infographic

I couldn’t agree more with what this infographic that I found says. There are many ways travel is good for you. For me, it’s also a way for me grow – to test myself in the midst of the unknown and the unfamiliar. Here’s how traveling has pushed me farther than what I believed to be my limits:

Learning to be more self-reliant

I have traveled solo in the past. And it’s been among the scariest things I’ve done. There’s nothing like knowing that I’m on my own to bring out a lot of anxieties and fears. I had to rely on myself while on the road. But it was also the most liberating experience I’ve had. It gave me the freedom to do what I want and take responsibility for the bad choices I made.

Seeing strangers in a new light

I used to take the “don’t talk to strangers” advice much too seriously. I’m the type who’d rather suffer than ask for help from anyone I don’t know. But traveling changed that. I had many unforgettable interactions with kind strangers who’ve helped in different ways. I discovered how sincere people can be even to people they’ve only met for the first time. This helped me grow as a person. It allowed me to step out of my comfort zone and take the time to talk with people I meet in my travels.

Broadening perspectives

Nothing beats first-hand experience in broadening perspectives. It’s easy to find information online. But no matter how much I research about a place, there’s always something I discover that challenges old beliefs I had. Traveling has changed the way I see things. It made me appreciate culture and the value of respecting differences. It made me more compassionate and more conscious about keeping an open mind.