The pitch is high.
Many women are expressing their anger, their pent up frustration with histories of quietly accepting second-class seats and positions. The year of #metoo is catapulting many women into new lands. A woman I know, close to the movement, is now a mayor. In fact, this year in Montreal we have several new women mayors, more than ever before. It’s inspiring to have women leaders in the public sphere.
There are a lot of firsts for women right now.
But that’s not all.
I am allowing myself to speak for the first time. I am finding my voice. The blog you are reading is the first I’ve written when it wasn’t to appeal to a higher authority. The writing I’ve done in the past has been for academia and for technical companies. In the Academy I’ve written many papers, mostly in third person to demonstrate my critical thinking skills. Otherwise, I’ve written hundreds of User Manuals and created Online Help systems for the end-users of software systems. I’ve written in both of these formats throughout my adult life. That’s over thirty years! The voice that I’ve used for each of these differs. The academic voice tends towards authority. The technical voice strives to be active, first person and at a grade six level of comprehension. I relate to both of these, authority and first person, yet I hear myself in neither of them.
I made a commitment to myself. I committed that by the time I reach 60, in a year and a half, I’d come out as my whole person. I’ve committed to be a true elder for the last third of my life. I’d gladly serve with my wisdom. One of the capacities I need to strengthen is my voice. In writing this blog, I am finding and strengthening my own voice. I can hear myself speak. It’s original and it’s mine. It’s this originality that I know is unique and needs to be shared. It needs to be shared because each original voice offers a unique perspective. We need all of those perspectives at the table to come to grounded consensus.
Putting a woman at the table is a start. Ensuring she is confident enough in her own skin to speak from a place of originality is another.
Contact me to balance out the voices in your organization or for coaching to find your voice firstname.lastname@example.org