7 ways to have your voice heard

Young people engaged in a conversation

Talking isn’t a skill you are taught in school or college; and yet it’s your only tool to have your opinion expressed and voice heard. Did you know that one out of every three teenagers is afraid to speak in front of people? This is one of the commonest phobias out there. You’re at an age and stage where you want to make friends, speak up in the classroom, discuss projects, and seek a career. Do these worrisome thoughts ever cross your mind when you’re about to speak up?

  • “My friends will think I’m not smart enough.”
  • “My idea might not be acknowledged.”
  • “This interviewer will think I am an idiot.”
  • “How come I don’t know how to keep conversations?”
  • “It will be embarrassing, because I’ll look like a fool.”

The most eloquent of public speakers can also get nervous and fumble from time to time. Nobody expects you to be forever witty and all knowing. Maybe you had a bad experience earlier and felt humiliated; possibly you had an unsupportive class or friend group or you’re simply an over-perfectionist who feels incompetent with the smallest social setback. The truth is, speaking publicly in front of people is important; and small simple techniques can make you shine with or without the spotlight on you.

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Dr Shefali Batra
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Dr Shefali Batra

Dr Shefali Batra is a Psychiatrist and Mindfulness Coach. Connect with her on Instagram @drshefalibatra and read more about her work at drshefalibatra.com.