Don't Find your Voice; Try Trusting it Instead!

Stop Trying to Find Your Voice. Try trusting it instead.

By Kris Windley

Don't Find your Voice; Try Trusting it Instead!

If you’re reading about writing, it seems everyone on the internet has something to say about how you should find your Voice.

They’ve got their reasons, I suppose.

Because having a unique & genuine writing style is a super important part of developing your power, as a writer.

But starting out trying to simply, “Find your Voice,” like it’s out there waiting for you somewhere can be overwhelming & intimidating for a lot of emerging writers. It feels too black & white; too right & wrong; too secret clubhouse.

And that can hamstring you, if you’re trying to develop yourself as a writer. I’ve seen countless writers (Including some super talented ones) stop themselves short because they felt like they hadn’t “Zing!” found that thing that makes their writing perfectly their own.

When you try to Find your Voice in that way, the worst thing that could possibly happen inevitably does: you stop sharing it completely.

And that’s when I really lose my mind. I mean – I totally get it. You do it out of fear of doing it wrong, & out of confusion about what right even looks like. But I don’t want to see it happen. I want you to do the opposite of shutting yourself up. I want you to scream & shout your words from the rooftops.Don't Find Your Voice | April 2016_Ribbon

But you’re not going to do that if you think you need to get a ribbon in the mail first that says, “Congratulations on a successful Voice-finding mission! Please find *Your Voice* enclosed.” It doesn’t work that way.

Nobody’s arriving at your place with that package tomorrow, & you’re not going to find your Voice at the end of a treasure map either, so you better get used to the idea of using the one you’ve already got – & liking it.

[clickToTweet tweet=”You’re not getting a ‘Congrats on finding your Voice,’ ribbon in the mail. Trust the one you already have.” quote=”You’re not getting a ‘Congrats on finding your Voice,’ ribbon in the mail. Trust the one you already have.”]

I know, I know. I’m stealing your excuses again, but this one isn’t helping you at all. It’s shutting you up, & shutting you down.

I understand the need to feel perfect & finished & polished like before you leave the house on a first date, but you have to just throw on your favourite jeans, a coat of your favourite red lippy & run out the door anyway sometimes, because the only way to figure out who you are is to trust yourself to just do it.

I mean now. Not later after you’ve got it figured out…because you’re not going to get it all figured out until you trust yourself to play.

And if you don’t trust your Voice, you run the risk of messing up or erasing the very best parts of it. No joke.Trust your Voice & let it out as it is right now. Let it be an adventure & notice what you love about the way you naturally write. Highlight the best bits & deal with the less than best bits as you go, & be okay with the process. Because afterall, that growth is the best part of being a writer.

You’ll end up trying to sound like one of “those people” who have it all figured out, but that only lands you sounding exactly like someone else. But not even that! It’s like borrowing an awesome shirt form your friend because it looks amazing on her, only to put it on look in the mirror to see something that looks like a different shirt altogether.

It’s never going to fit you quite right, because it’s not yours.

You need to trust your Voice, & let it out as it already is. Let it be an adventure & notice what you love (& don’t love) about the way you naturally write. Highlight the best bits & deal with the less than best bits as you go, & be okay with the process.

You could actually start to enjoy that process.

Because that’s when you can start to be yourself, & your readers will get to know the unique, interesting & genuinely you part of you that would be missed otherwise. You know – the best parts.

No more agonizing over every other word; no more dread of the draft because everything is riding on this being perfect immediately. Imagine sitting down to write your next blog post or chapter & looking forward to the process.

Yes I’m serious! Writing can be a highlight in your day. It can be fun again.

Like, “I can’t wait to sit at my keyboard & talk to my awesome self for two hours. I’m friggin’ hilarious!” kinda fun.

It can happen, & it’s a whole lot more satisfying than chewing off your fingernails before drowning your sorrows in donut sprinkles. I’m not by any means saying donut sprinkles are wrong – just that you can eat them while you write a wicked blog post, instead of eating them while you weep & hide & guilt-shame yourself for not writing one.

It’s also way more likely that you will be willing to step up to the mic & share some of your great jokes – or captivating stories – or brilliant advice – & that is the biggest & baddest reason of all for you to put down the gavel & quit judging your Voice.

Because I’m willing to bet that you have pages of unpublished, half-written blog posts chilling in your Evernote – or thirty beautiful but mostly empty notebooks stashed on your bookshelves – just waiting until you, “Find Your Voice,” before you let them out.

Do you really want to know, for once & for all, the way to find your Voice?

[clickToTweet tweet=”You have to use it. Explore it. Change it & play with it, & then rinse & repeat. That’s your secret!” quote=”You have to use it. Explore it. Change it & play with it, & then rinse & repeat. That’s your secret!”]

Only when you open yourself up bravely to do that, will you Trust your Voice, & let it grow with you. It’s a never-finished project, thank goodness. So go now & start exploring, because if you worry too much about trying to find your voice at the end of a treasure map, online course, or in a classroom – you’ll just end up hiding behind someone else’s or even worse, you’ll shut your mouth entirely.

Don't Find Your Voice | April 2016_MicYou’ll turn off the mic & step off the stage without ever sharing the message you are raging to share, & that is totally unacceptable.

That’s why I think trusting your own Voice is so important, & it’s why I’ll be about how you can nudge yourself toward that more comfortable writing-place for the next four weeks.

I don’t want you to miss a thing, so make sure to sign up for With a K Writing tips in your inbox, so you get first dibs on the creative tricks & ideas we uncover this month – including a special surprise to start off next month that even long-time readers will get excited about…& probably say something along the lines of, “It’s about friggin’ time!”

So keep your eyeballs open & get ready, because I’m not going to let you get outta here without a different way of looking at your writing & feeling about your Voice.

xo
Kris

KrisWithaK

Kris is a writer, editor, illustrator, teacher, mother of two amazing young ladies - and enthusiastic cat-belly snuggler. A certified teacher, long-time blogger and experienced brand consultant, she writes about Writing, Business and Blogging...and sometimes about Changing the World.

Comments

  1. Oh Kris, Scchhttaaaaaappppp it! I totally have all the feels right now.

    I have lots of things rattling around in my head, and in 4 different note books, plus Word, aaaaand Google docs. All sitting unfinished because *drops head and mumbles* I-didnt-feel-like-I-had-the-zing-of-my-voice.

    Then, I think – just do it Tracy. Get it out there, do it more and it will sort itself out. I get super motivated write some stuff, then I find myself conveniently distracted by NEEDING to fold and put the washing away. Then the Zing Attack begins again.

    So a writing challenge is JUST what I need to kick my sits-in-the-office-too-much butt into being more free!

    So, all that said, I can’t wait to sit and write, being all hilarious and stuff, because well – Me. *Mic drop*

    • Hahahah!
      You *are* hilarious, Tracy, & you *do* have to just let the stuff rattling in your head out to play with the rest of us. The challenge is going to be great, because doing it just once is not enough, right?
      See you May 1st! In the meantime though, keep your eyes peeled for the next post in the Series.
      xo
      K

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