“It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I am not going to be silent.” – Madeleine Albright
When I read this for the first time, it instantly hit that this was ME.
Coming from a background where girls were not supposed to give opinions. And even if they gave opinions, it was unheard. I grew up thinking that girls were supposed to follow instructions. Still, I had dreams of working in corporate and make a name for myself. But at the same time, the uncertainty of the real world scared me.
In my first corporate stint, my work was appreciated, but still, there were many areas of improvement. As a part of our training programme, I was asked to attend an experiential learning workshop for 5 days. It was designed to receive feedback about one's own behaviour and the impact it has on others from strangers, who had gathered from different parts of the country. The objective was to come to terms with your own feelings and emotions which we usually tend to suppress and most importantly be in PRESENT.
This was something new to me, but I was enjoying the sessions thoroughly. Then, in one of the sessions, when I was sharing my feelings, someone interrupted my talk and I kept silent. I did not even realise that someone has run over my voice. The important thing to note here was that I did not value my viewpoint enough, and hence, had let the other person take over without my consent. It is so important to value your own self in order that others start looking up to you. Simple as it may sound, but is crucial to have your own voice and stand for yourself and for things that you truly believe in with conviction.
Unknowingly to make others happy, we mould ourselves to the situation and circumstances around us forgetting the strength and capabilities inside us.
That day was the eye opener when the facilitator highlighted and explained the scenario of how humans behave or react in different setups. Then on, I started observing myself more vigilantly and started voicing out my thoughts wherever and whenever possible. It was not easy, but also not that difficult. You just have to make an effort and lead yourself to it if you really wish to work on your weakness. Every person has weaknesses. No one is perfect. Only person perfect is the one who identifies and keeps working on his weakness to make him a better person.