08/27/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

Have You Been Silenced?

When was the last time you could not or did not speak your truth? When you either said the wrong thing in anger or said nothing at all from fear?

You no doubt spent the rest of the day muttering to yourself the things you should have said or what you really meant. But the words stuck in your throat. Or they blurted out so inappropriately that your underlying message vanished in the process.
Why did you take the situation so personally that you lost balance and objectivity and did not speak clearly and rationally? Why did you react with anger or fear?

Because you were silenced, that's why. Your basic human right to speak was ignored.

I'm not only referring to times past, where someone told you to "Be quiet" or "Shut up." But also to circumstances when someone cut you off while you were speaking. Or did not listen to you, or ignored you, took advantage, publicly humiliated or offended you by announcing how wrong and stupid you were.

In some form, at some time, we have all been silenced. We all have felt that our voice had no value, that we were invisible.

But why do these feelings rise up in some situations and not in others?

Behind your negative emotions and automatic negative reactions are memories -- memories of feeling that you were treated unfairly or disrespected, memories of feeling unimportant. The memory could be something as ordinary as your parents telling you to quiet down or stop crying. Or it could be something as extreme as a parent slapping you or yelling you at for saying the wrong thing or screaming at the top of your lungs, as little children do.

In addition, your brain also holds the knowledge and memories of the collective consciousness -- of the millions of human beings who have come before you and live among you where policy, laws, culture or government have shut down or shut out their voices. Imagine the millions of people whose human rights have been silenced. They are rightfully angry, but fearful of speaking out. These injustices have effects not only on the individuals involved, but on the planet as a whole.

Fear Vs. Love

When you are involved in a situation that triggers an experience of feeling invisible, disrespected, or voiceless, the individual memories, combined with the collective memory, flare up and trigger the Fear Response. The Fear Response will automatically stimulate emotions of anger and fear. For the most part, you can't help but experience these feelings. It is like trying to stop shivering when it is cold outside.

Know that your voice and physiology vibrate from basically only two places -- The Love Response or The Fear Response. In the vibration of love you are in balance. In fear, you are not. It is virtually impossible to vibrate in The Love Response when you feel shut out or shut down.

So what can you do to change the Fear Response to the Love Response so you can speak your truth?

Rather than focus on the person or situation that has made you angry or fearful, focus instead on your own physiology. Be aware that your physiology is out of balance and decide to shift your vibration into one that comes from love. Give yourself the approval and recognition you are longing for (the very same that you are not getting from the person or situation you are or were in).

Try this:

Inhale deeply
then exhale completely.
Repeat to yourself: "I am seen" as you inhale
and "I see" as you exhale,
"I am valued" as you inhale
and "I value" as you exhale,
"I am heard" as you inhale
and "I speak" as you exhale.

Do this at least 10 times.

Imagine that someone you respect is looking you in the eyes and telling you how wonderful you are and that you are indeed seen and heard, that you are important.
You can even hug yourself as you imagine this scene.
Do this as long and as often as you need.

Trust me, it works.

Once you have settled down your physiology, you may find your voice again. You may find that you are less attached to the outcome of the conversation or situation and that you can speak your truth more calmly and rationally.

When you do so, you will be healing yourself and replacing a negative memory with a positive one. On the larger scale, you could also be contributing to the healing of the collective consciousness. You could be creating a space for others to have their voice, because now you are not screaming at them. Moreover, as you create a model of self-love and respect for others, you may be impacting more people than you realize.