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Disrupt: Yes or No?

We started the week talking about compliance so now I invite you to consider, Consent.

When you encounter an action that challenges you in some way, how do you decide whether to proceed?

For many of us, the answer is “simple.” If you “have to” do something you do it even if it doesn’t sit well. So let’s take an example of something like that and work it out a bit.

Let’s say you are assigned to a project with someone who, for whatever reason, is difficult for you to work with. You might be less than thrilled but your boss insists. You decide to have a positive attitude and the work gets done but, it was exhausting. Perhaps, you now distrust your boss a bit and your regard for that “difficult” co-worker might have hit rock bottom. But, why? You made the best of it and the work got done. Maybe you were even praised for the work but, any good feelings about it quickly fade. The cause is that you didn’t engage with your own consent.

What does that even mean?

When we convene to do work, we need people to sign on to do it. Often that happens on a surface level, but human beings are not operating on a surface level. If I say “yes” to something when I really want to say “no” that choice requires internal negotiation. That is the part most of us skip.

So here is what it might look like.

  • I am asked to work with a difficult co-worker. That is a No.
  • My boss is insisting. Still, No. But, why does my boss want us to work together?
  • My boss has a great reason and this is important to them. Maybe, but still No.
  • Where does this fit into my relationship with my boss, the work I am doing, and this workplace? I like my boss or my job so I can get to Maybe.
  • Can I improve this situation to get to Yes? Are there negotiables with my boss and/or this co-worker that can make the project more desirable? Yes?
  • What if, my boss is unreasonable or there is no room for my autonomy in this situation? Then I have to decide to either say “Yes” because I need this job or say “No” and navigate those consequences which may include leaving this job. That “Yes” or “No” I have to make for myself passed on my thought process and reality.

So that was a pretty simplified framework that is pulling from an actual situation with variables that may not apply to you. Still, I hope it makes the point.

If you don’t want to do something, force is not the answer. We live our entire lives in this body and with this mind. Respecting that is the key to our ability to use these physiological resources to their fullest as we interact with the world.

This Friday at 12:30 pm EDT, Gina will be live on FB. These will be short voice alignment sessions aimed at voice skills building. Watch it on the GROW Voice FB page. I hope to see you there.

Gina Razón is the Founder and CEO at GROW Voice LLC, a full-service verbal communication studio in Boston’s Back Bay.  She has over two decades of experience as a teacher of voice and speech, is a communication and change facilitator, and is a voraciously curious voice user.  Gina has worked professionally as a classical singer for over a decade and more recently as a professional public speaker.  For more information on the studio or to book Gina visit

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