Real You: Finding your voice

I've spent a lot of my life not speaking up for myself. People find that hard to believe, I suppose, given my work history and the like. But it's true. Today I found myself unable to speak up for myself. What did I do? I cried. As women we're so often taught good girls don't get mad, don't express hostility or anger. But, we are encouraged to express our feelings. Somewhere along the line, my mad/sad reflexes crossed, and now, when I'm really angry - you guessed it - I cry.

I worked with a wonderful speech coach when I published my first book. I hadn't realized before then that when you write a book people expect you to speak about it. I'm a writer, I thought, not a speaker. Well, the reality is you have to become both.

Most of the time I spent working with my coach I spent finding my inner voice. My confidence. To know I had something to say and that others would want to hear it. Sure, I still need to remind myself of that lesson. But it's an important one.

You are important. You deserve to be heard. Use your voice. Be heard. Be strong.