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Here it is; I love silence. I’m an introvert and while I can and do engage with people they simply wear me out. People make me physically tired. I need silence in my life and I struggle to find enough of it. My best purchase in the last five years would be my noise cancelling headphones, which indeed I am wearing right now. I find our world to be too busy, too loud, too excessive in chatter, too much for me. In silence I am grounded. In silence I find clarity. In silence I find me.

However, if we truly desire to be people of influence then we must use our voices, in fact I would say we are called at a very deep level to speak to the causes and issues that resonate with our values. This means we must at times step out of the shadows of silence and into the glaringly painful light of noise. At times this may mean joining the masses and speaking in unison or it may mean standing alone, a solo voice offering a unique perspective. And while it may be difficult to stand up and speak alone the greater tragedy lies in a decision to remain silent. Silence speaks volumes.

Let me be clear, your voice matters. Your voice is unique, own it.  As a person of influence you must decide how you want to use your voice to empower, inspire and serve the world. You must respond to issues you feel called to speak to. Make no mistake about it, your voice matters. The weight or volume of your voice in this world is not defined by your income, your title, your age or your accolades. The volume of your voice is determined by your decision to speak your truth. Your voice is small, little and lacking credibility only when you choose to be silent. You determine the volume of your own voice.

I am amazed at how quickly someone will comment about a frivolous photo or video on social media but remain silent about issues of substance, the issues that genuinely impact the quality of life for another human being. We fear standing and speaking alone but only in raising our own voices and speaking our truth do we discover and create moments of invitation for others to stand and speak with us.

Our strength is not in our silence but rather in our ability to share that which speaks to us in silence. So find your space, find your silence, find your soul and listen. Listen actively and deeply. And when your soul speaks to you allow those words to echo into the world. What is heard in silence should become a dialog. We find truth in silence but the truth comes alive when it is shared with others. The reality is your silence will not protect you, but your words hold great power to serve others.

Hear the silence before the dawn, listen, learn and then speak a new dawn into fruition. Speak to that which matters to you. I firmly believe that silence, used incorrectly may in fact be the 8th deadly sin.

What speaks to you? Speak back.