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How to Speak Up and Make Yourself Heard

Updated on November 5, 2017
nicci attfield profile image

I am a researcher, writer and PhD student focusing on Ecopsychology and social transformation. I enjoy sharing my thoughts and experiences.

Add your voice to the conversation

You might have had moments when you know you want to speak out. You have a point, and that point buzzes within you, taking on a life of its own. You're bursting to share, almost exploding with the need to put your point across, but there's one problem. You will be going against social norms or beliefs! It makes you feel scared that you won't be heard and that leaves you feeling feel uncertain. What does standing up to dominant beliefs mean in a word gone mad? Speaking up adds a new message to the conversations that might one day bring about the change you are hoping for.

Agents of change


"Be the change you want to see in the world"

Speak with certainty

Leave your listener without any doubt of what you believe. Come across as stong and confident. Advertisers do this all of the time. "Buy our product! Go on, make your day!!!" You might not want to use amplified language in the way advertisers do, but you can still add a sense of authority to your message. Draw on experts within your field. Back your findings up by research. Use strong language and be assertive when you deliver your message. This will help you come across as trustworthy.

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter" Martin Luther King Jr

Be consistent

Be consistent and confident in your message

Once your point is certain, make sure you repeat it consistently and with confidence. Complete certainty in your own beliefs helps you to establish your own authority. When thinking through your own thoughts, gather together those you truly believe in and are prepared to commit to without a doubt. In a world gone mad, it is the steady and persistent messages which persuade the majority. Think of the green revolution, which is starting to gain a strong public following. This happened because of a consistent message from its followers.

Make your information relevant and easy to understand

When putting your message across, make sure that your message is relevant to the audience. When people can relate to you, it is often very helpful. When looking at the environmental movement, and why it wasn't creating change, the historian Theodore Roszak found that messages which related to deeper human needs for belonging or solitude resonated with his audience far more deeply than messages of guilt or shame. When you appeal to your audience's needs, and you make your message easy to understand, you are often able to reach people in ways which have impact.

Prepare your audience: give hints

By letting your audience know where your message is leading, you enable them to follow your thoughts. In this way, your audience or listeners will think along with you. Some of the thoughts you are sharing might even seem like theirs too. You won't be alone this way when you are delivering your message.


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