Speak up: the value of saying it out loud

Your voice is important. Make it matter.


(From left to right) Sophmores Christine Mun, Taylor Adams, and Morgan Chadwick  |  Amber Nunn/THE CHIMES

Zurich Lewis, Writer

As we find our footing once again for another semester, we are often reminded of why we are here at Biola, in college — to receive an education. Why? To pursue our dreams and to get a good job along the way. We all go through this experience, and an end always exists. But how can you make the most of it? How will you remember this time that you spent? Fondly? Regrettingly?

Today I find myself in this new position as opinions editor of the Chimes, hitting the ground running, gathering stories, fostering opinions and tackling the hard issues of our day. This job was not given to me because I was entitled, but rather because I worked hard and voiced my opinions in my time at Biola. The opinions I voiced were not what mattered — the passion did. Talking about what you love will attract people to you. Though they may not have that same opinion or that same love, seeing the twinkle in your eye and hearing the confidence in your voice will make them absolutely willing to listen because it is exciting.

This concept applies to conversational settings as well as many other venues. Should you find yourself in a classroom or a seminar and have even an inkling of doubt, want to know how the information applies in a different context or simply want clarification, then ask. Never live in fear of raising your hand or asking for the microphone, because chances are others are thinking the exact same thing. Even if they are not, then congratulations, you just contributed to the discussion by bringing a whole new perspective to the table.

Active listening is key to speaking up. I do not advocate speaking up to be “that guy” or even to get over a fear. It is OK to want to be “that guy,” but you must ask a valid, substantive question in order to achieve all the aforementioned goals.

In this way you will sharpen yourself to become a better communicator and a better person. Whatever you are thinking may sound like common sense to you, but when talking it out, you may realize a flaw in your logic. Making this a habit, orally or in writing, will make you that much more effective in expressing and understanding what you believe and how you can work with others to make your dreams happen.

Speak up, because you do not want to regret missing your opportunity. Speak up to live your life for God. Speak up because you have something to say.

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