“I communicate good…I mean, well.”
The truth shall set you free and bring you strength! – Sometimes I become self-conscious when it comes to my speaking abilities in certain settings. Whether I’m interviewing, emceeing an event, or am surrounded by a more affluent crowd, I find myself trying to “turn off” my accent, reach a higher point of articulation and questioning my speaking abilities. I become extremely careful about what I say so that I won’t come off “country,” misunderstood or sound “dumb.”
“But how is that so CeCe? You’re a communicator! It’s what you do.”
Simply put – that which will change lives for the better usually gets attacked the hardest. For years I’ve been told I’m not a strong writer but guess what my writing is the reason I’m where I am today. For years I’ve also been told that I need to work on becoming a “better communicator.” “Cassondra, speak clearly…Cassondra, articulate…Cassondra, pronounce your words…Cassondra, speak proper english…Cassondra, this…Cassondra, that.” Once, a very well known actor asked me what did I want to be and after telling him a talk show host he told me that I would never be on TV because of my accent and dialect. He really hurt my feelings but honestly, after hearing that, I purposed in my heart to PROVE MYSELF RIGHT – to not only be on TV but to be a world renowned TV Talk Show Host and Actress – and I will be.
I’ve rarely ever heard, “Cassondra, you’re a great communicator. There’s so much power in your words. I love how you can effectively, clearly and concisely communicate your stance verbally”…but guess what, I haven’t stopped chasing my goals. When interviewing, emceeing, speaking or anything pertaining to verbal communication, if I begin to doubt myself or I feel myself becoming self-conscious and start hearing negative thoughts such as, “you can’t do this….don’t speak, it will come out incorrectly…what are you doing up here?…is or are?…what are you trying to say?…you know people can’t understand you…? Etc etc” I immediately hear, “JUST BE YOURSELF” and in the next moment, I exhale and excel.
It’s when I stop trying to be “perfect” and conform to what society depicts as a “good” communicator, that I excel beyond measure and leave a lasting impression. Speaking effectively is a gift that I am blessed to have and I am thankful for it.
I’ll leave you with this… I’M MADE FOR THIS! Literally, I am made for this. My communication skills and accent are GIFTS. They weren’t learned but came natural and have opened up countless doors for me. Now don’t get me wrong, my communication skills have been perfected through constant awareness and a conscious effort to say what I mean and mean what I say because I understand the power of words. My accent…it’s a Midwest thang! Lol…and honestly, I receive more love for it than I do hate. It’s actually what sets me apart and makes me stand out.
I hope my transparency helps someone. If you remember nothing else I’ve said remember this, “Just be yourself.”