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Speaking with Confidence and Clarity: Harnessing Your Authentic Voice with Susan Murphy
Episode 4329th November 2023 • The Fire Inside Her with Diane Schroeder • Diane Schroeder
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Are you ready to ignite your inner fire and find your authentic voice? In this episode of "The Fire Inside Her," host Diane Schroeder sits down with seasoned voice coach, Susan Murphy, to explore the power of conscious breathing and its impact on effective communication. Discover how mastering your breath can help you slow down, think before you speak, and exude confidence. Susan shares her expertise in helping individuals find their unique tone, commanding presence, and influential voice. Uncover the secrets behind building an authentic life, expressing your true needs with bravery, and creating genuine connections in any profession. If you're ready to unlock your true potential and be seen and heard, tune in to this captivating episode of "The Fire Inside Her."

Susan Murphy likes to say, "You can't shoot at a moving target."

She's been in the broadcast industry for over 40 years. She's been a radio news director, a TV news reporter, and "weather girl" back when they called them that! A talk show host and producer for radio, a Public Television producer and on-air personality, a college dean and instructor, a voice-over artist, and now a broadcast voice coach.

Book Mentioned:

Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art by James Nestor

How to connect with Susan

https://susanmurphyvosot.com/

LinkedIn

www.linkedin.com/in/susan-murphy/

How to connect with Diane

www.thefireinsideher.com 

Diane@Thefireinsideher.com 

Instagram

@TheRealFireInHer 

LinkedIn

www.linkedin.com/in/dianeschroeder5/

Are you excited to get a copy of the Self Care Audio download that Diane mentioned?

You can get that HERE –TheFireInsideHer.com/audio

If you enjoyed this episode, take a minute and share it with someone you know who will find

value in it as well. You can share directly from this platform or send them to:

https://TheFireInsideHer.com/podcast

Transcripts

We feel it is important to make our podcast transcripts available for accessibility. We use quality artificial intelligence tools to make it possible for us to provide this resource to our audience. We do have human eyes reviewing this, but they will rarely be 100% accurate. We appreciate your patience with the occasional errors you will find in our transcriptions. If you find an error in our transcription, or if you would like to use a quote, or verify what was said, please feel free to reach out to us at connect@37by27.com.

Diane Schroeder [:

Welcome to The Fire Inside Her. The podcast where we explore the incredible stories of individuals who have discovered their inner fire on their journey to authenticity. I'm your host, Diane Schroeder. And I am so grateful that you are here.

Diane Schroeder [:

Have you ever wondered what it truly means to find your voice? Not just the words you speak, but the essence of who you are? Well, today, we have a guest whose life's work has been dedicated to helping others discover their authentic voice. Join us as we step in to the world of a seasoned voice coach, Susan Murphy. She has spent decades navigating the ever-evolving landscape of show business and journalism. Now she's on a mission to guide you on a journey of self-discovery through the power of your own voice, because she knows that finding your authentic voice isn't just important, it's the key to unlocking your true potential. Welcome, Susan Murphy. I am really looking forward to our conversation today. How are you doing?

Susan Murphy [:

I'm doing great. Thank you. We've finally gotten a little break from the heat where I am, and that's making everybody a little bit happier.

Diane Schroeder [:

Wonderful. Well, the icebreaker question that I would like to start with today is, what is your current favorite book that you're reading?

Susan Murphy [:

Oh, the current favorite book that I am reading and can I recall the title of it? I can’t but it's the building and then what happens afterwards. I love historical fiction. So, this is The Vanderbilt Mansion in Asheville and how it was built and then, how it was run and how it has affected the town of Asheville, and I just love stories like that, about the Gilded Age and building of things is one of my favorites was about the Brooklyn Bridge. It was a really thick volume, but I enjoyed every moment.

Diane Schroeder [:

Oh, that's fascinating. You know, I've never been to the Vanderbilt mansion. My brother and sister-in-law go all the time. They absolutely love it. And I love the genre of historical fiction as well because if it's written and done well, it just leaves the mind open to so many possibilities.

Susan Murphy [:

e to read about anything from:

Diane Schroeder [:

Wonderful. I like that perspective. Great. Well, we are here to talk today about using your authentic voice and finding your voice. And if you could just tell me and my audience a little bit about you and your background, and how you landed on empowering people to use their voice.

Susan Murphy [:

Sure. I've been in the broadcast industry forever. More than 4 decades. Started out in radio. Being a broadcaster on television, whatever, was something I knew I've always wanted to do. So, I was not one of those people who struggle to find a career or what do I really want to do. And so, I've been very lucky that I actually got to do what I set out to do. So, I've been in the business forever, and I've been in radio and television, and I've done podcasting, and I've done public television, and I've just done a whole lot of things because I truly believe you have to be open to reinvention at all times. I'm a voice actor as well as now a voice coach. And it was a couple of years ago after I had moved from New York to Charlotte, when I'm flipping around TV channels and I'm watching these young people in newscasts who look great and they might be able to shoot a story, okay and their writing, well, their writing is never that good.

Susan Murphy [:

But, you know, they have a lot of the attributes needed to do well on television except for their voice. It's pitchy. It's sing-songy. It's breathy. Trying to do sports center. We're trying to be Kim Kardashian. And I ran this idea of mine, past a news director friend. I said, maybe I could become a broadcast voice coach. And he said, yeah. I think it's a great idea. I think it could really go a long way. He gave me 2 of his reporters. I worked with them, sent them back. Noticeable improvement. He didn't pay me. He just wrote me a lovely recommendation, hung out my shingle on LinkedIn, and lo and behold, here I am.

Susan Murphy [:

Now it's taken some time to gain traction and credibility. I have worked with well over 100, pushing, I think, 160 clients at this point. There are about 600 news directors in the United States, and I would love news directors to say, hey. You know, I've got a couple of people that I'd love you to work with, and that is starting to happen. I work with 5 or 6 news directors now, as well as people who come through my website or they get a recommendation or word-of-mouth kind of thing. So, not only do I help you find an authentic voice and your best pitch, that's really what I work on, you can't do the voice without the writing, so when we meld them together, by the time I'm finished with most clients, they are better writers, and I don't want to turn the channel because of a voice. Now, admittedly, I'm a little attuned to that. But I think too, if you don't have an authentic, natural voice, how can you be taken as authoritative, as serious, as being in command? It goes for a lot of people, and I have worked with ministers and CEOs, and I can do some basic public speaking and presentation coaching, but there are a lot of people who do that.

Susan Murphy [:

I work primarily in the broadcast realm, but a lot of what I teach can easily be taught to people in other businesses. So, it's important to develop a voice that is yours. Men tend to naturally do it because when their voice changes at puberty, their vocal cords grow and elongate, and they end up being the size of a quarter. And their voice changes because of hormonal changes. When our voices deepen a little bit as we get older, it's certainly not at puberty, so we don't have that marker that says, okay, you're an adult now. A lot of women continue to speak in very girlish tones, and the reasons why are numerous, and some of them were very surprising to me and kind of sad. And we can talk about that. But our vocal cords are only the size of a dime. And it is amazing to me that the parts of our body that we communicate to the world with, the primary art is the size of a dime. Every time I say it, I am in awe of that.

Diane Schroeder [:

I had no idea. Well, thank you for sharing snippets of your story, and so many thoughts are running through my brain. I think that well, I guess I'm curious if when you started your broadcast journey so many years ago, was it primarily male dominated? Is it still primarily male dominated? And how was that initially for you to really find your authenticity and kind of your personality while journeying in that male dominated world?

Susan Murphy [:

olutely. Graduated college in:

Susan Murphy [:

My first job was in West Palm Beach, Florida. And it wasn't as though I thought, okay, I need to mimic or I need to compete with my male colleagues. But what I did need to do was to match in intelligence and intensity and in groundedness and in authoritativeness. How was I going to do that? I have a different set of vocal cords. I have a different range of speaking. And so, I was kind of aware of it. Couldn't tell you what I did. Pretty much I was born with most of this voice, and my voice hasn't changed much since I was, like, 25. It, kind of, has always sounded like this. And I managed to escape a Philadelphia accent. It sounds like I come from nowhere. That's what you had to sound like. Now, accents, yay, are a good thing. It, you know, it exposes you to somebody from somewhere else. Yay.

Susan Murphy [:

So, I worked very hard at developing a voice with no accent and proper pronunciation. And, oh god, probably my biggest sin for years was that I over enunciate. It's just a habit. But it has served me well in broadcast. And my career as a voice artist, I can do characters. I can do a commercial, but I'm better cut out for narration, that kind of thing. So that's what I primarily do. It's been a journey of just sort of, let's see how I can make this work, and I never discussed it with anybody. Now I've done this. I've taken singing lessons, voice acting lessons, what I've learned in the business. What I have gathered from other people particularly in voice acting in terms of pitch. I now think I'm well qualified to teach it. And then I did some of my own research to combine some biology, physiology. What I didn't know I'd have to do was psychology. I had one client just the other day. We wrapped up a discussion. She goes, you’re a news therapist, aren't you? I said, yeah. I'm a news therapist. It's a lot harder doing being a reporter and anchor now than it was in my day.

Diane Schroeder [:

I'm sure.

Susan Murphy [:

Oh, in every way, shape, and form. And my heart goes out to them for how hard they have to work and what they have to know and what they're now seeing at 23 in terms of crime, in terms of mass shooting, in terms of political incivility, in terms of education years ago.

Diane Schroeder [:

You know, I think of for a brief time, I was a public information officer at an organization that I worked for, and I was always just in awe when the news reporters would show up at 4 or 5 AM in the morning for a fire looking, put together and makeup and smelled really good. And I feel like I, most of the time, just rolled out of bed and threw a baseball cap on so I could give of what was going on. I want to give you credit for continuing to pour into the industry that you served for so long. I think how great that you never felt you had to compete with the men. I know my journey in the fire service, it took me a long time to get to that point to just be myself.

Susan Murphy [:

But you actually had physical benchmarks to match or either come close to. So, talk about something that's difficult. Sorry. You had it way worse.

Diane Schroeder [:

You know, it's funny. The physical benchmarks weren't as hard as the acceptance and trying to feel like I belonged. And, really, it's magic how this all ties together. It was you know, you talk about using your voice for command, presence, and, really, to run a scene, I had to learn when I became an officer how to use my voice on the radio because that's how I would set up an emergency scene. That was the direction of the call, and I learned really early on. In fact, my dad taught me that the calmer and more grounded I could be on the radio would set the scene up for success, and I really remember that. And so, every time I would run a fire or a significant incident, I would take a deep breath before I keyed the microphone. I would try to sound calm and clear.

Diane Schroeder [:

And even if things were going crazy or falling apart. I tried to remain calm. So, I think it's important for my listeners to hear because, you know, they may not be in broadcasting. They may not be in the fire service or anything like that, but, you know, you talk about looking to your gut for your voice and staying grounded. So can you tell me a little bit more about why it doesn't really matter what your profession is to find your authentic voice and why it's so important to be grounded when you use it.

Susan Murphy [:

Do we have 2 hours?

Diane Schroeder [:

Okay, maybe the Reader's Digest version.

Susan Murphy [:

What I've learned in coaching voice in other people, you always reflect back on what you've done. The nice thing about LinkedIn, it's a lovely community of all different kinds of people. But when you find your tribe, you learn from them as well. So, I've had the ability to connect with some marvelous coaches in our industry. We all do a little something different, and I've enjoyed learning from them. Whether you work in the financial services industry and you sell financial product, it's about connection. You to your fire people, a nurse to her patients, a teacher to students, it's all about connection. And how do you establish that? Well, you do it through your voice.

Susan Murphy [:

s are absolutely inefficient.:

Diane Schroeder [:

Okay.

Susan Murphy [:

What I do is I put broadcasters and anybody I work with in touch with how to breathe into their belly while they're awake. I have a very long version that takes me an hour to teach, but I also have a short version. And the short version is 7 words. Start to get in touch with a natural pitch. Seven words.

Susan Murphy [:

Drop your shoulders and breathe into your belly.

Diane Schroeder [:

Drop your shoulders and breathe into your belly.

Susan Murphy [:

And that sets you up. That's the quick version of how to bring up air and energy, which to me is the same thing. Air and energy from the bottom of your diaphragm, which is that cylindrical muscle that is attached to the last ribs on your rib cage. When you breathe into it, it can blow up like a balloon, sort of. It actually goes north and south, not east and west, but I always use the balloon. When you breathe the air in and you fill your diaphragm with air and then you speak boldly, not loudly, just boldly. Once you start that practice, you’ll start to develop where your best pitch comes from.

Susan Murphy [:

And for women, it is generally lower and rounder than they think because women tend to, we don't notice changes in our voice the way men do. So, I just get you in touch with breathing into the belly. And I have a whole system that I work with that is a breath practice very similar to what a yoga teacher would teach you. But my recipe is you breathe in on 4 and you exhale on 6. And any time you do rhythmic breathing, you activate your parasympathetic nervous system. Counters your regular nervous system, and it puts you in focus. It lowers your heart rate. It lowers your blood pressure, and it just allows you to start being the best version of you.

Susan Murphy [:

Your central nervous system is responsible for fight or flight. Your parasympathetic nervous system headquartered in your gut, you know the expression, oh, my gut told me not to do that. Trust my gut. Well, you know, no kidding that your parasympathetic nervous system is headquartered there in front of your digestive system. Rest and digest are parasympathetic. Fight or flight is your regular nervous system.

Diane Schroeder [:

I love that. And as you were talking about the breathing, I immediately went to yoga because it's so similar. You know, as someone who's practiced yoga for several years, it's all about the breath and staying focused on breathing because then I can be grounded, and then I can be stable, then I can find balance. You know, I always say that balance has nothing to do with shifting your priorities. Balance is about being stable in your life because you have to be stable before you can balance. And the how the breath is connected is just it's beautiful.

Susan Murphy [:

, the movies figured this out:

Diane Schroeder [:

I know. There's a wonderful book that I read, and I can't remember the author, but I will get it to you when we stop recording, called Breath. And I will put the book in the show notes as well. And it's a fascinating book about how we breathe and how, you know, breathing through our nose versus our mouth and really how evolution has not been kind to the human species for our breath because of a lot of processed foods and how we've changed the structure of our mouths and how we breathe. It's a fascinating book, so I will pass that along to you and also put it in the show notes. Thank you for giving us some direction on how we can drop our shoulders. As soon as you said that's exactly what I did and breathe through your breath, I guess my question is, why is it important as a parent, as a partner, as a friend, to understand your voice and to use it not just for arguing or commanding something, but just for a genuine conversation. How does your voice reflect back on that, and why is it important to have a genuine voice for tough conversations as well that aren't necessarily heated or arguments?

Susan Murphy [:

When you are conscious and aware of your breath, drop your shoulders, breathe into your belly. You're taking air all the way down to the bottom of your diaphragm. It's a longer process than breathing so shallowly. When we're breathing shallowly, it tends to hasten the pace of our speech, and we're not thinking before we speak because everything is racing, because clavicular breathing in the heat of an argument or a conversation, even a pleasant conversation that you're just completely interested in, muscles in your body tighten up. The long version of what I teach my clients has to do with relaxing muscles all throughout their body so that only the muscles that need the energy from your diaphragm past your vocal cords and out through the mask of your face, that's the only place that needs energy. No other place in your body does. And when do we do that? I was working with a client this morning, and she was just having the hardest time, you know, I call it getting into the zone, this whole thing that I put her through, because it required her to sit still.

Susan Murphy [:

Who sits still anymore? So, okay, Drew, you know, let's try this again. We're going to start at the top and just gently focus. And she did do it the 2nd time. And then when we started some vocal exercise, yes, a more natural Drew came up. It's going to be hard for her to get that up consistently because she's just not used to it, and we can go into that in a little bit. But because you're breathing into your diaphragm where it's a longer journey, that does 2 things. It allows you, as you're taking the breath, therefore not speaking, it allows you to actually think about what you might say next. And as you drop your shoulders and take a breath between sentences, the pause allows you to formulate the next thought, but the pause also allows me to absorb what you just said.

Susan Murphy [:

A second and a half to 2 seconds at most. You know, I'm going to drive a truck through that pause, but even the slightest of pauses can allow the other person to absorb more of what you said, and it allows you to think about what you're going to say next. It also stops umms and uhs. The breathing into the belly becomes that placeholder. And you're less likely to fumble and stumble. I always say to my clients, you know, news directors, they're so helpful. Well, you know, Stella, I think you're just reading too fast. Slow down. That is not helpful to Stella.

Susan Murphy [:

No. What does that mean? Stella would slow down, but it would probably suck all the energy out of what she's trying to deliver on air. So, I don't use, I call it the s word. I don't use slow. I say, let's be intentional and deliberate in our speech. Meaning, there are some words or phrases will be emphasized more than others. But if you're intentional and deliberate, it means you have connected to the words you are reading on the prompter. Again, coming back to connection, connects you to your viewer.

Susan Murphy [:

You don't work for the news director. You don't work for that TV station. You don't work for that company. You work for me. Why do you work for me? Because I can turn the TV off. If you consider your audience at all times, no matter who that audience is, you're more likely to succeed.

Diane Schroeder [:

That is really profound to hear, and I think the other piece of it by slowing down and being intentional is that you genuinely can respond because you're listening. When you're breathing, you are listening to what the other person is saying, and then you respond and not react.

Susan Murphy [:

Exactly. And then your reaction should be equally as measured.

Diane Schroeder [:

Yes. As you're saying this, I think I have a teen at home now. He is starting to go through some changes. I call it the hormone soup at our household because I'm premenopausal, and he's going through puberty. So, we just never know what we're going to get. But when I try really hard to not get agitated because he can hear it in my voice, and that's what he'll say is, don't talk to me in that tone, mom. And I'm like, oh, you don't tell me how to talk. But then I had to take a deep breath. Exactly.

Susan Murphy [:

A screaming match. Yep.

Diane Schroeder [:

It does. And nothing gets done. And then so if I can stay calm, he stays calm. And I just think of other times in my life when it's not necessarily about speaking the loudest. As you've said, when someone very in control of their voice and who knows who they are and are authentic, they don't have to speak loudly. They just speak and then everyone listens. That is so much more empowering, you know, when it comes not only to authenticity, but I think when it comes to taking care of yourself. So, how would you say that, you know, using your authentic voice is really a gift of self-care?

Susan Murphy [:

You know, I've never put it in exactly that phrase, but I'm going to start. Because I truly believe that confidence in anything you do rises from your diaphragm, your gut. And when you can master, edit, believe in and summon up authentic tone, natural conversation, your confidence in speaking to other people, whether it's, you know, a TED Talk or an arena of 10,000, on television or just to your spouse, your confidence grows. And maybe you will be more likely to say honestly what's on your mind, to be fairer to be less likely to say something you'll regret, and that too all builds confidence because that behavior, that communication is well sent. Now, communication has 2 sides. The person who sends it and the person who receives it. So, there's always that question mark. But in true communication theory, if there's an error from the communicator to the communiqué, it's the communicator's fault, probably. That authentic way of speaking and becoming braver in telling a boss or telling a spouse what you really need, what you're really looking for, what has to change, or to be able to even say after somebody is, you know, said something to you, instead of reacting, take a breath and say, could you tell me more about that? Shows that you're interested in what they said and that you want to hear more. Now what that does is it helps the other party, feel, seen, and heard, and it allows you more of an opportunity to figure out what you're going to say back.

Diane Schroeder [:

Can you tell me a little bit more about that? Can you explain more? I think it approaches the question with curiosity over judgment. Obviously, that's very important so that it doesn't become adversarial. And I think going back to what you said about having more confidence when you use your authentic voice is you do feel seen, you feel heard, and it gives you more confidence. Confidence builds on confidence. So, you know, you practice talking with your spouse or your child, and then you learn to ask for more of what you want. And I think that's a beautiful gift of how to take care of yourself. Because if you can ask for what you want, express what you need, and be clear in that, it's a very powerful tool to carry with you, and you can use in any situation, whomever you have to speak with.

Susan Murphy [:

An authentic voice builds an authentic life.

Diane Schroeder [:

Tell me more.

Susan Murphy [:

To go back to somewhere between 15 and 20% of the women I work with, I've got a lot of strategies, a lot of tools in my toolbox to get you to breathe and speak boldly and blah, blah, blah, and let's get that voice to come up. And for about 15% or so, nothing works. And I had to figure out what the problem was, and I hit it. Well, depending on my relationship with the person, I will either ask questions. Or I will say something like, Terry, I'm wondering a little bit about how you grew up. I'm wondering about the kind of parents you had and what the atmosphere was like in your home. Maybe you had an overbearing younger brother or an overachieving older sister or maybe your parents didn't get along. Maybe there was a lot of fighting. Maybe something happened in school. Maybe you were bullied. Maybe you didn't have a lot of friends. You withdrew kind of a little bit. Where something happened in a class where you got up to read or present something and you got slammed by the teacher or classmates for the way you did it. Sometimes you see this nodding or I'll hear, yes. That resonates with me. Or sometimes they'll say nothing, and I'll just keep going.

Susan Murphy [:

So, you know what I think? I think maybe there is a part of you that did not step into a more adult voice because the voice you had as a child getting into teenage years got you through whatever you had to get through. It got you what you needed. It allowed you to navigate some kind of possibly dysfunctional world, and that voice got you through that. And so now that voice is very much in your head. That voice dictates how you do things. Let us thank that voice. Voice, you got me this point. Thank you. I couldn't have done it without your voice. Thank you. Literally thank your voice. Have that conversation. Voice. I'm going to try a little something new. I want you to move over to the side. Don't leave, voice. Don't leave. You can't ever wrestle with that voice. You'll lose. So, you just ask to move to the side, and you are going to try on a new voice.

Susan Murphy [:

But like I stressed my clients, I'm not inventing anything. I'm not making up a character. I'm not giving you something you don't already have. You just don't know how to use it. So, allow that voice. Thank that voice. Let it move to the side, and we're going to step out, and we're going to step up, and we're going to bring your natural self, up from your diaphragm, and you know what? You've never heard her. I'm going to introduce you to her. I give you permission to step into this. You give yourself permission to step into this. And then you know what? In due time, the voice fades away quietly, and you are your true authentic self.

Diane Schroeder [:

Yeah. That is beautiful. So much of that resonates. I think there are several tools that we pick up along the way aside from our voice that, you know, serve us to get through life, to get through difficult situations, and they become very comfortable. And I call up my security detail. So, you know, the voice is just part of the security detail used to get you through life. And what you said, I could not agree with more. You have to recognize it. You have to thank it, and then trust that, you know? I always say to my security detail, look. I appreciate you guys. Thank you. Like you said, sit off to the side. I'm going to try something different. I know that you're here, and it doesn't work out. But for now, I need to try something else.

Susan Murphy [:

Exactly. Just to get back to the standard client who I work with, a broadcaster, many of them grew up idolizing the news. Not everybody, but so they would have favorite anchors and reporters. And so, in their head, they had to sound like what they thought an anchor should sound like. Maybe it's like, do you need to sound like you think a doctor should sound like? Or a wife? Or a partner? Or a mother? No. Not what you think it sounds like. You, please. You, the authentic you, are what it needs to sound like.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. I hear this a lot. Oh, I could never do a podcast because I can't stand the way my voice sounds. And I think that I felt that initially when I started to record, but now that I've had the opportunity to speak over the last several years and record a lot of podcast episodes, I've gotten used to how my voice sounds. Do you find that common, well, probably not with broadcasters, but can you see why people don't like to hear their voice?

Susan Murphy [:

Sure. Because when you're speaking, you hear it one way. It's physiologically different than when you hear yourself played back or on your answering machine or in a recording that somebody plays back for you, you go, oh, that's not, no. That is, you. That's how we hear you. Because when you speak, you hear it in a completely different way. So that's perfectly normal? There are times I'll listen back to something I recorded and cringe. Oh. Oh, I did it that way? Oh, okay. In my head, I didn't do it that way. So, we have to give ourselves grace. And as you said, when you do the practice and when you've become more at ease with it, then what also happens, you know, the confidence grows, but it's the subject that you're talking about is what pulls people in. A voice that's difficult to listen to, and there are plenty of radio podcasters or broadcasters who have really unusual voices. Ira Glass on NPR, This American Life. Joe Rogan doesn't have a particularly pleasant voice, but a lot of people get past it because it's the content.

Susan Murphy [:

So, don't look at it as, oh, people are going to hate my voice because I hate my voice. We hear it differently because we're not just listening. We're not just getting tones and pitch and what but we're getting content. And if the content is good, I'm going to stay. Most of the time.

Diane Schroeder [:

Absolutely. Thank you for sharing that. The time has just flown by. And I love, I love everything that you have said because I just feel like it's really going to resonate with my listeners. And just the idea of using your voice and getting comfortable with your authentic voice and just what that leads to down the road is really an infinite mindset versus a scarcity mindset. And to kind of step out of your comfort zone is perfectly okay because it's not the same as public speaking, but similar. No one, you know, no one likes public speaking. It takes time to get used to public speaking. But that doesn't mean that you should be afraid to use your authentic of voice because it's everyday life, so you can just practice small. You don't have to start with saying you're going to jump onto a big stage. You can still find your authentic voice.

Susan Murphy [:

And you can't flip a switch in bringing up a natural pitch or being aware of how you sound, or do you end every sentence up? Like so many kids today, they all sound like this because they can't land a sentence. Half of that is, alright. Now that I've told you, it's in your head now, that'll fix 50%. The other 50%, you're going to have to work on. But it's going to fix 50%. So, what was my point of bringing all that up? Is that you can do a little bit at a time. I always say to my clients, 2% a day. I saw you can't go 30. You can't go 80. It's impossible. Shoot for a better writing experience or a better vocal experience for 2% of the time. 2% of the time every day adds up. Let's start at the open of the show where you're welcoming people, you know, to the newscast, whatever. Let's work on that for a whole week. That’s not more than 90 seconds. We have a whole hour to go. But what was over the first 90 seconds?

Diane Schroeder [:

It's the atomic habits, the tiny habits, the consistency, and practice. So, it's worth the investment. I believe that the return on investment and learning how to use your voice and how to speak up is a lot better than people might pay attention to. And the changes probably won't happen overnight. Either you won't see it, but then you look back, and you're like, wow. For 6 months, I've been practicing on using my voice, and things have started to change in my life. I'm communicating better with my people. I'm articulating what matters to me. I'm asking for what I want, and that's just a glorious way to take care of yourself. So, Susan, thank you. My final question for you is, what is, aside from voice, the one piece of advice you would give my listeners on being their best authentic selves.

Susan Murphy [:

Don't be apologetic. So many of us think if we're going to swim against the tide, or we're going to disagree, or I don't like that book as much as you liked it, that's okay. Because don't apologize for your thoughts, your feelings, your desires, your needs. And depending on how we were raised, if it doesn't match up to somebody else's oh, I'm sorry. Oh, no. I'm sorry. Don't apologize.

Diane Schroeder [:

That is absolutely perfect advice, and something that I really needed to hear for sure. Thank you so much, Susan. I will put all of your information in the show notes on how people can find you, to work with you, and if they have any other questions about their voice and how to work with a voice over coach. So, thank you so much.

Susan Murphy [:

Thank you, Diane.

Diane Schroeder [:

Another great conversation. Thank you for giving the valuable gift of your time and listening to The Fire Inside Her podcast. Speaking of value, one of the most common potholes we fall into on the journey to authenticity is not recognizing our value. So, I created a workbook. It's all about value. Head on over to thefireinsideher.com/value to get your free workbook that will help you remember your value. Until next time, my friend.

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