One of the visions I have for my life, is to be a speaker who brings other people back to themselves; the person they most likely know the least. I don’t have to look too far ahead in the future to see this occurring. I’m asked to speak at meetings often enough, and each time I share, my story becomes a little more refined, clearer, and I begin seeing myself standing in front of an audience sharing a message of self-empowerment to a full auditorium. What I love most about speaking, is how the people relate to me. I don’t spend very much time on how ugly it looked to be a drunk. We all know what that looks like, and what it feels like. We don’t go to meetings as a pastime (most of us anyway). We go because things got ugly and we needed to find our way out of hell.
When I speak, I share about how disconnected I was from who I am today. I tell my peers how I was always looking for something or someone outside of myself to feel better, and how when I got into recovery, I discovered that I was the one whom I was searching for all along. When I began reconnecting to myself, the love and power that filled my soul, was so far beyond a fix or a high, that I no longer imagine ever going back to that way of life. Why would I stay sober if it was anything less than incredible? If life sober is worse than life drunk, why not stay drunk?
After I speak, other people share, and this is when I get to be blown away. You never know who is going to speak up and say something that simple matters so much. I end up going home feeling ignited and motivated. People relate to me, adding more to my own story. It’s like collective momentum that builds in those rooms; where each person gets to plug in for an hour and recharge their sober battery. The greatest thing about speaking, is that I get to set the mode for that hour. I get to choose how my story reflects on the faces of the people I’m speaking to. I like making people think, and I like when people think about, or hear something in my story, that they’ve quite possibly never considered… like how God isn’t something outside of themselves. Some people don’t realize this because a higher power seems so obscure.
Public speaking rates at one of the top fears for most human beings, even above the fear of death. I used to be terrified of speaking to a crowd, yet I still have this burning desire to do it as a facet of my career. Each time I speak in the rooms, my fear is eradicated. I’m discovering myself having more fun speaking; and if I’m having more fun, so is my audience. I think it’s pretty incredible that I’m offered so many opportunities to refine my public speaking skills inside the rooms, where people are incredibly accepting and receptive.
I wrote this today because everyone’s voice matters. If you are asked to speak at a meeting, you should always say YES! There is something in your story that will have an affect on someone else. We all relate to one another, and we all want to hear a fresh voice, along with a different perspective on things. Don’t ever let this opportunity pass you by, because not only will you be honoring your recovery, you will discover yourself more motivated after that meeting, than you ever have sitting back in the chairs listening.
Your voice matters. Your voice matters more than you even know.