6 Incredible Lessons You Must Learn Before Voicing Your Opinions

Are you an activist? Do you support any causes?

It doesn’t matter who you are. Whether you are an advocate who pleads for a cause, a certain group of people, or just a normal person who’s passionate about a specific topic, your voice has the power to change the community around you.

Your voice distinguishes you from others. It gives you the freedom to stand out from others and be different. Having a voice and using it effectively is equally important to make the change you wish to see in the world.

But speaking your mind isn’t always easy or necessary. Teach yourself these incredible lessons before you jump into the next possible argument, debate or discussion.

Be Confident

The individuality of each person makes this world more exciting and interesting. The uniqueness of each human being causes us to have different opinions, ideas and beliefs.  We must be confident enough to own and express our thoughts, ideas and opinions without feeling restricted or guilty. Build up your confidence slowly by simply voicing your opinion in the workplace or in the relationships you have with people. Don’t hold back your thoughts when interacting with friends, colleagues or family. Let your ideas and feelings be heard in a friendly and thoughtful manner. Let your individuality be revealed by speaking your mind. Be bold. Be courageous.

If someone is belittling you, be confident enough to stand up for yourself. Your opinion matters. Having a voice and using it confidently will help you develop as an individual. The more openly you share your opinions, the more defining your character will be.

Rethink Your Thoughts

There is a poster in my classroom visible to all students. It reads,

Before you speak, THINK.

T Is it True?

H Is it helpful?

I Is it Inspiring?

N Is it Necessary?

K Is it Kind?

I always teach and remind my student to rethink their thoughts and converse in a tactful manner. Being able to process thoughts before voicing all of them help us speak only what’s necessary. It prevents us from causing unwanted disputes among peers. You must always think rationally before you state your opinions or disagree with someone else’s. Sometimes, conflict situations are best to be avoided than be carried on inconsiderately. You must learn to voice your opinions, but if the situation and the time are not right, you must learn to hold back your thoughts. if the other person you’re trying to communicate with isn’t willing to listen, your words are not valued or understood by them at all no matter how hard you try.

Use The Right Tone

Making-impact-using-your-voiceWhen voicing your opinions, never raise your voice at the listener. Being aggressive will not help you get your points across clearly.  Before you open your mouth, engage your brain in the process. Process your thoughts wisely and share your point of view politely. The effective ways of communicating do not involve aggressive techniques but only require kind words. You don’t have to be cruel, mean or hurtful when voicing your thoughts. Mahathma Ghandi or Mother Theresa did not make a difference in the community they lived in by violent communication. They used their voice in the kindest way possible and the world still listened.

Back up Your Opinions

You must not only be confident enough to own your ideas, voice them effectively and politely, but you must also be able to support your opinion by providing necessary points and facts. Do you agree with someone’s view on feminism? Do you disagree with certain religious beliefs? Why or why not?  To make your opinions known, you must first be able to support your beliefs, ideas and thoughts with valuable insights. It will help you draw public attention to a certain issue and show others that you are genuinely concerned about the matter you’re talking about.

Learn to Respect Others’ Opinions as well.

It’s easy to open up our mouths and say how we feel and what we feel. But listening to someone when they are talking about their feelings often seems impossible. We must always remember to respect other people’s views, feelings and opinions. If you are conversing with another person, let their voice be heard too. Communication is a two way street. Don’t be disrespectful and impolite. Listening is as important as speaking. Just because you do not agree with someone else’s opinion or see eye to eye on a certain topic, you should never speak of their views disrespectfully. You are entitled to have your opinion and so are others. Be compassionate.

Stay Silent When Necessary

Sometimes, the day-to-day discussions we hear are driven out of anger, revenge or hatred. With the advancing technology and ever evolving social media platforms, people are always expressing their opinions online and offline. Sometimes, voicing an unpopular opinion through social media or in real life may not be the smartest idea. It can cause dispute with your friends, colleagues and damage your relationship with people. Sometimes it’s prudent to not speak your mind out loud no matter how badly you want to.

 

In response to the daily prompt: Voice

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