It's not what you say, but how you say it

Two women are in a conversation at a table by a window.

We set so much importance to our visual appearance; clothes, cosmetics, make-up... and in this time of technology we can even alter our visual traits, online or offline, so that we are more appealing. Many of us believe that our outer appearance reveals a lot about our personality, character and even health. On the other hand, many of us do not think about the importance of what our voices can communicate.

When was the last time you thought about how you spoke? I do not mean what you say, but really how you say it! I believe the voice is the mirror of the soul – not just the "eyes" as it is often said. Your voice can mercilessly reveal how you feel about something or someone. It can also trigger certain feelings and emotions or ideas to others.

The voice is one of the primary modes of self-expression. When and how we use it reveals a lot about our self-perceived strengths and weaknesses as well as our self-confidence, insecurity and attitudes.

Vocal projection can also be an indication of social, cultural, developmental and psychological conditions. It can reflect aspects like family and geographical history (dialects and accents), cultural norms and social expectations (especially tone, strength and volume). Interestingly the average voice of women in middle Europe has deepened in the past 60 years. Scientists assume that this can be linked to the emancipation of women and their increased presence in the working world.

Someone's voice can actually give the first signs for illnesses. For example, the voice of patients with ADHS tends to be inflexible with a rigid articulation while patients with depressions tend to talk monotone. The development of the voice is a physical, mental and spiritual process. Therefore, computer specialists, doctors and psychologists have started to develop automatized analysis methods, to be able to efficiently and systematically use information of the voice.

In understanding the importance of our voice as a tool to communicate, what is the most effective way we can use it? Many of us assume that our voice is inherited and unchangeable, but what a lot of people don’t know is that we can change our voice concerning precision, clearness and persistence.

So, what does all of this show us? Score with language culture! Don’t serve the good wine in a blotchy mug...serve it in a sparkling crystal-glass. Sometimes it is more about how you say something rather than what you say.