Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My Year of Hopefulness - Finding your voice and your pack

"He who cannot howl will not find his pack." ~ Charles Simic

Your own clear, strong voice can be elusive. Writing helps me find mine every day, and that provides a benefit for every other area of my life. I've connected with people I'd never have met otherwise. I've developed friendships, mentorships, and a vast network as a result of my writing. It's been a true blessing in my life. Through writing, I found my voice and that helped me find like-minded people.

Someone recently commented to me that bloggers are arrogant and self-indulgent people who just want to talk about themselves. I'm not sure when we turned the corner from wanting to share our experiences to being arrogant and self-indulgent. If we follow that train of thought that means every person who ever wrote a memoir, opinion column, or created any piece of art in any medium that somehow conveys their life experiences is arrogant and self-indulgent. And consider how many stories didn't get told, and therefore didn't get shared, and therefore didn't help anyone because other people like the one I spoke with about bloggers discouraged others from finding their voice. It's sad.

I'd argue that anyone who thinks their life isn't worth blogging isn't living an interesting enough life. Whether they choose to do that or not is of course their business, though the reason for not doing it should never be that they aren't interesting enough. People are a lot more interesting than they give themselves credit for.

A friend of mine has been pretty badly bullied at work by a senior leader. During a recent focus group about this leader, he found that many other people felt the same way. Until this focus group, he felt alone in his predicament, wanting very much to keep his job and also wanting to stand up for himself. He got that chance through his focus group, though only found his voice because others around him found theirs too.

In a way, the person I spoke to about bloggers is a bully, too. A bully is anyone who dissuades someone else from taking up an activity that helps them realize who they are and helps them find others like them. Or they're at the very least incredibly unhappy, miserable people. I watch the Today Show while I'm getting ready in the morning, and this morning there was a segment on bullies. It's becoming all too common these days for adults to encounter bullies. They inflict fear on others because they live in fear themselves.

Finding your voice, and your pack, is about releasing our own fear and not allowing others to make us be fearful. You owe it yourself. The joy of life is found by connecting with others, sharing with others, and helping others to find their own happiness. Don't let someone else take that joy away from you under any circumstances. Share your story, spread your wings, and make the most of the days you've got.

1 comment:

runner52 said...

Tell the perosn if he doesn't like bloggers, then don't read the blog