On where to begin when you're hungry to speak your truth.
Of all the capabilities you can develop within yourself, being more able to speak your truth is the one thing that will probably have the most profound effect on your life. I say this because speaking your truth is the precursor to living your truth. When I say “speaking your truth” what I mean is you being able to articulate your experiences, deep wisdom and deeper longings in a way that allows you be seen and heard. So as much as “your” might seem singular, it is not. Instead, speaking your truth allows you to focus on your individual capacity to create change so that the truth that you speak creates clarity for yourself as well as for everyone who is able to hear it. Furthermore, speaking your truth extends far beyond simply expressing your opinion. Truth is a collective understanding put into words; your truth is you bearing witness to your explorations within that interpersonal agreement. Sounds juicy, doesn’t it?
There is, however, one catch.
In order to be able to speak your truth, you must know that truth within yourself. Perhaps you define truth as purpose or even as a connection to an energy higher than yourself. Whatever the case, if you don’t first know your truth, then you obviously can’t articulate it. I think one of the reasons we’ve become so saturated with quotes by other truth-speakers is because it’s easier to regurgitate the words of others than to do the digging to uncover our own. If you’re feeling the anxiety rising in your chest when you read that, know that being able to define your truth for yourself is not the impossible or even mysterious act that it might seem to be. This isn’t The Secret where ambiguous language will be used as a way to either mesmerize or frustrate you. I have no interest in convincing you that I am some gatekeeper standing between you and your voice.
Quite the opposite.
I want you to know how to speak your truth. I want you to be able to become more articulate and amplified in sharing your message. When I let go of my last freelance marketing client this past December it was because I was struck with the realization that I could help people speak their truth. There I was editing spelling mistakes for social media ads when I could have been changing lives. And, I admit, sometimes editing spelling mistakes is what’s needed to get by. Still, I could no longer shake the feeling that I was hiding from the work I was actually meant to be doing. Maybe I didn’t feel ready. After all, I’d only just completed my first year with Integral Coaching Canada. More likely though, I was just disconnected from my own truth and when it came online for me late 2017, there was no denying that I had to give my everything to my coaching practice.
I’ll be honest, I’m super aware of my words now.
When you start to speak your truth, shit happens. Good shit, for sure, and still not always at a scale and speed that feels manageable. This is how speaking your truth inevitably turns into living your truth. You become so clear in what you’re asking for—and in what you’re able to contribute—that things tend to fall into place quiet quickly. Not by any magic; simply because in every moment of your day you are clear and focused on what you need to happen next. The distractions and insecurities that would previously push you off balance become unimportant. Familiar triggers fall away and, in addition to being more intentional with your words and time and energy, you are more able to weather the discomfort of change. One way to check if you are speaking and/or living your truth is to notice how you react when faced with a challenge. Do you meet it with gratitude because it further illuminates that you’re in alignment with your truth? Or do you spiral back down into familiar ways of being, shaken by what’s just taken place?
Truth is a verb.
It may as well be a bar of soap. If you try to hold onto your truth, it will inevitably slip out of your grasp. As you grow as a human so your truth evolves within you. This is as it should be. The more we wake up to the reality that we live in, the greater our capacity to hold a bigger truth within the container of our awareness. This is why we need practices that allow us to continuously check in and re-orient ourselves in relation to our truths. I do this by creating practices that strengthen specific capabilities that allow you to unpack your truth and give words to something that can otherwise feel unclear and difficult to define.
Now, before I give you a practice in a few days to help you start the process of speaking your truth, I want you to take some time to think about how you presently define your truth. What is it that is very clear to you? What is it that feels out of reach? No need to pin it down; just be aware. Then stay tuned for a practice that will help you unpack your truth, even if you feel completely lost at this exact moment in time. It matters that you get clear on your truth, love. It matters that you feel seen and heard and are able to get your message into other people’s ears.
Your truth matters.