A Woman's Tone of Voice
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A Real Life Tone of Voice Story
Has there ever been a time when the tone of your voice hurt another woman's feelings? I remember a time when I snapped at a friend of mine. I didn't mean to. In fact, most times I am able to maintain my composure. Not this particular time. This time I LOST it. My tone of my voice sounded like a crocodile biting off the head of it's prey. SNAP. UGHHHHH!!!! "Did I do that?" I said to myself. "Oh, yes, I did." As I watched the tears swell up in her eyes, it was crystal clear I had hurt her heart. If my heart had been a balloon, it would have deflated at that very moment. I felt so awful about my actions toward a sweet friend. I never set out to cause her harm. How could I praise Jesus one day and the next day hurt a fellow sister in Christ?
Getting to the Root of Your Tone
Reactions are real. They come and go. As a wife, mother, friend, co-worker, fellow church member, we are always projecting some type of tone: cheerful, encouraging, testy, snappy, discouraged, snide, angry. We will mess up with our responses. But we don't have to let our emotions get the best of us and everyone around us. We need to continually keep our tone in check. How do we do that?
Getting to the root of the tone of your voice can help you walk in freedom. In my case, when I reflected on my snappy tone of voice, I was able to trace its origin back to my hurried state. I was late. I felt like I let everybody down. I was disappointed in myself. As a person who tries to be dependable, I was undependable that day. On the drive over to my friends house, I mentally had already persecuted myself about being late and in a hurry which in turn caused me to be very tense. The moment I stepped out of the car, my inner frustration was obvious through my tone of voice and facial expressions. When my friend told me to relax, I lost it. I threw self-control out the window.
It's important to sit down and take an inventory of your vocal tonal patterns. Some of the hardest times for women to keep a check on their tone is when they feel unappreciated, hurt, forgotten, hurried, frustrated, late, left out, or betrayed. Those feelings fester in the heart and then come bubbling up in the tone of voice she projects toward others. Tone of voice can always be traced back to one of these inner feelings.
The Bible says:
"Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer"
Three Ways to Reel In Your Tone of Voice
1. Don't beat Yourself Up-
We all mess up. Confess it to the LORD and quickly ask forgiveness from that person. Make right the relationship if at all possible.
2. Get to the Root - Ask yourself, "Why is this tone coming out of my mouth at this moment?" Is there a life circumstance or other underlying cause bothering me?
3. Practice A New Way of Responding- Learn from your mistakes. If you know your hot buttons, then you can be on guard to not give in to them and react in an unkind way. The more you are able to think ahead of the possibilities of changing your tone of voice, the better you'll be at not hiding beneath the frustrations of life through the tone of your voice. Practice in the car, at home, while you cook. Try to think of a new way to respond.
You Can Change
Has someone recently told you that your tone of voice was hurtful? Asked you what was the matter? Asked you if you were OK? It's probably your tone of voice that is signaling to them to ask the question.Take their question with a teachable heart and get to the root of your tone. Examine it and see if it connects to your life circumstances or unchecked inner feelings.Why is this important? Because we are a witness of the LORD to others. May we always, always, always let our aim be for the tone of our words to please the LORD and be "acceptable" in His sight.