Yoga teaches me to use my voice. In an earlier lesson, I wrote about yoga bringing me back to my singing voice. Once I began to get comfortable with the sound of my voice, I began to use it to set boundaries in my personal and professional life.
Not using my voice to express my needs and desires had become a sort of habit for me. I remember my first forays into booking and negotiating my own contracts. I didn’t speak up and ask for travel expenses to be covered and ended up spending more than I made. I ended up working for free as a yoga teacher and musician quite often the first few years of my career. I accepted that I was at fault for this as I did not express what I needed, so I did not receive it.
I’ve done this in relationships as well, not saying out loud what I needed to avoid anticipated conflict; and always wondering why I didn’t receive what I needed. I mean, why couldn’t the other person just read my mind?
Not speaking up is rooted in the fear that I will be disliked or shunned for my viewpoint. However, when I don’t speak up and express, the life I’ve constructed is artificial and out of alignment with what I need to do the work I am meant to do.
This makes perfect sense on a basic level. If I don’t receive some sort of payment for whatever it is that I do, then I’m unable to cover expenses for food & shelter, and can no longer offer that service.
Likewise, in relationships, if I don’t communicate what I want, then I’m in turn expecting the other person to read my mind and find out what I need which will most likely be incorrect.
So, not communicating my needs and desires is really expecting the world to figure out what I want and then getting frustrated and upset when it’s not what I want - which is ridiculous!
I’m in a relationship now and what attracted me to him is his languaging when he asked me what I wanted to do that night - “What do you envision for dinner tonight?”he said “Wow,” I thought, “nobody ever asked me what I wanted in that way.” Asking what I envision opens me to realize that I am the one who shapes my reality. I make choices and communicate them to those around me and then they become a reality, it’s as simple as that.
Now, when someone asks me to play a show or invites me to teach somewhere, I request what I need to pay for my time and service. If it can’t be provided, then I have to pass. It’s not easy to say no, but it’s necessary that I value what I need energetically to keep going and if I don’t set those boundaries using my voice, nobody else will set them for me.
Hi! I'm Robin - Teacher, Singer, & Author. I love creativity & sharing what I love!