“It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I am not going to be silent.” —Madeleine Albright
For years I was quite quiet. I had a few friends who I talked to regularly, but I was never really talkative. I kept to myself as often as I could, never giving my true opinion or voicing my concerns. There was even a time when I believed that my thoughts and opinions were not good enough or that because someone else’s response was so elaborate that my own had to be inadequate. It wasn’t until college when I developed a true voice and no longer am I afraid to use it.
“Dont compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got.” – Janis Joplin
As a young adult I learned that there is a difference between a quiet and a silent women. I learned that if you have a voice, it’s best to use it. You just have to decide when. There are times when I have self-doubt. I am not perfect. I don’t always know exactly what to say, but I always find the words. I don’t always have a response in that moment, but the moment I do, I say it. No holding back.
“I am an example of what is possible when girls from the very beginning of their lives are loved and nurtured by people around them. I was surrounded by extraordinary women in my life who taught me about quiet strength and dignity.” – Michelle Obama
You do not have to be a famous actor, singer of entertainer of some sort to influence an audience. As mothers and grandmothers, even as friends, women have a responsibility to one another to encourage and uplift each other. We have an obligation to set positive examples for generations to come.
There is a difference between being outspoken + respectful and loud + headstrong. I personally believe as women we should still exercise self-control and mildness. Actually, as humans in general we should demonstrate these qualities.
Unfortunately we live in an era where often times silence gives consent. If I say nothing, then I must agree. If I don’t speak up then I must be okay with it. If I don’t respond then I’m giving permission. This is the type of world we live in. We cannot take our voices for granted, ladies. You can’t want to be heard or understood, but fail to speak or respond.
I am not encouraging rebellion or insurgency. I don’t advocate for breaking laws or opposing government officials or authorities. However, the right to speak and voice your opinion is a gift. Don’t take your gift for granted. Speaking out could change a life; maybe even save a life. As women, our voices matter.