In the Buddhist teaching, Upajjhatthana Sutta, there are five remembrances for contemplation. The one I…
Have you ever had to speak professionally with someone you actively dislike or fear? How did that go? Chances are, not as well as you think.
Unless you are a sociopath, your voice is never going to lie for you. You can craft whatever words you would like but if you don’t attach some intention and some empathy to those words, they will not land well. Sorry.
We have a thought problem. We like to rev up the anxious, contrary, adversarial parts of our brain but then expect to enter the world as voices of professionalism and wisdom. And that is what those of us trying to engage in polite society are doing. The evidence of the alternatives is all over the news this morning. This society is losing cohesion and while our words are at the center of this, it begins in our thoughts and beliefs.
When you speak to someone you fear or dislike, or even about someone you fear or dislike, it is important to remember their humanity. They may be an absolute, grade A jerk but they are still a human being. They aren’t the center of the conversation and neither are you.
Communication is a team sport. One that requires the intention to connect human to human. This is the heart of the resources that allow us to speak with authority and influence others. The understanding of and commitment to how humans meet in the air between us.
I wish I could say that others will grant you the same grace. The fact is that hostility towards others has become as commonplace as the air itself. Still, the voice does not lie — This is a thought problem. And only you can engage with your thought problems. Humanity really needs us to try.
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 www.growvoice.com.