Finding Your Voice

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Finding Your Voice

In a couple weeks I have the honor of speaking with up to 200 people about advocating for oneself. Finding our voice - not just to speak up for ourself but to create opportunities for advancement, acknowledgement and compensation.

This is such an important topic. So many messages get in the way of us promoting ourselves.

  • Self-promotion equals arrogance, is the opposite to humility
  • I’m not perfect, not the best person for the promotions, etc.
  • I should focus on what I need to work on, focusing on strengths
  • People will think less of me if I seek recognition
  • What if my sense of my accomplishments is off and I’m not realistic?

The list goes on and on.

How do we move towards healthy self-promotion, advocating for ourself but not crossing over in to arrogance?

What is the difference between arrogance and healthy self-promotion? How about arrogance versus healthy confidence?

As an observer of someone else it can be hard to tell the difference between confidence, arrogance and insecurity. Arrogance shows up as an attitude that sees oneself as better than others. Often it is hiding insecurity. The arrogance is over compensating for the internal struggle with self-worth, likely unconscious.

So, how do we move toward the healthy version of this.

I love this old verse - very roughly paraphrased - ‘Don’t think too highly of yourself but use sober judgement.’

Practice noticing and acknowledging your positive traits, qualities, talents, gifts, etc.

This can be very uncomfortable in itself. For me it is helpful for me to see my talents as a gift I was given and am the responsible steward of. When I look at them this way I can acknowledge them more easily, knowing that I was given them and entrusted with them.

What are 5 things about you that are wonderful? That you like?

List your accomplishments - the bigger ones that you sure can be proud of and celebrate.

Spending time self-acknowledging our accomplishments can help us feel ready for new challenges. It can also help us practice the language we need to share our accomplishments with others when appropriate.

What are the top 3 accomplishments you are most proud of?

Name the fears that have held you back from using your voice for yourself.

Rejection, jealousy, misunderstanding, etc. can really keep us from moving forward and becoming all we can be. We play small to not make the people around us uncomfortable with our abilities. We play small because we are uncomfortable with our own potential or strength.

If fears and concerns no longer controlled you, what would you like more of in your career?

Finding a voice to pursue more of what you want may not happen in one easy step. Often the first step towards this is increasing our own comfort with seeing who we really are. Enjoying our good qualities and saying them out loud is a great starting place.

Bonus Homework - if you are willing, make a magazine cover highlighting you! This is the successful, amazing you that the world needs to know about! You can do this about current you or about future you who has realized some more growth and dreams.

You know I’d love to see your magazine cover pages please if you do this!!!! ([email protected])

Until next time,

Shine on!


Marilyn Orr, CEC, PCC is an executive and leadership coach with Capacity Building Coaching, and training partner on EQ-i 2.0 with MHS. She is also co-owner of new Texas Hill Country eco event center and wellness retreat, The Cedars Ranch.

Marilyn provides professional coaching for executives and business leaders, mentor coaching for coaches, and leadership development support in the form of coaching skills training, soft-skills development, facilitation of key discussions and team coaching. Would you like to work with Marilyn? Reach Out to her today.

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