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VOCAL HEALTH
Shhhhh ... Moments Of Silence Will Clear
Your Mind - And Give Your Throat A Rest
January 9, 2015

By Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D.
Voice Specialist
Author, Broadcaster's Survival Guide


If youíre a voice over artist or a broadcaster, youíre probably wondering why a voice specialist would tell you to be silent. After all, you make your living by talking!

But you might do better work if you observe silence in two important ways.

The first way is to take a short time each day to sit in silence. Even as little as a couple of minutes can help clear your mind and calm your body so you can be more present and productive.

CAN YOU BE QUIET?

Sitting in silence without talking or using any electronic equipment isnít easy.

A recent study at the University of Virginia found that 67% of men tested and 25% of women hated the idea of being silent for just 15 minutes. They said they would actually prefer a mild electric shock to having to sit alone in silence.

This dislike for silence is not a new thing. Blaise Pascal, a French philosopher in the seventeenth century, said, "All human evil comes from this: our inability to sit still in a chair for half an hour.Ē

So consider mastering the art of sitting in silence a few minutes each day. You donít have to chant "Om,Ē or become a mystic, just slow down and tune out once a day.

THE SILENT TREATMENT

The other valuable time to be silent is when you have a sore throat or vocal fatigue.

Silence (vocal rest) is whatís called for in these instances. Vocal rest is especially important if you have to be on the air or tape a voice over.

In the time that youíre not in front of the mic, practice silence. Let your damaged vocal tissue rest so it will heal faster. Donít force yourself to make sound when your vocal folds clearly donít want to.

Try letting silence work for you. You may find that you are more productive and less likely to have vocal problems.
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ABOUT ANN
Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D., is a voice specialist with more than 40 years experience and has helped hundreds of people make the most of their voices, working with broadcasters, voice over artists and podcasters around the world. An author of eight books and over 50 articles on voice, her Broadcaster's Survival Guide e-book offers more tips on dealing with holiday stress, plus advice on how to improve your voice over performance by making simple lifestyle changes.

Web: http://OnlineVoiceCoaching.com
Click for: Broadcaster's Survival Guide

If youíre a voiceover artist or a broadcaster, youíre probably wondering why a voice specialist would tell you to be silent. After all, you make your living by talking! But in the coming year you might do better work if you observe silence in two important ways.

The first way is to take a short time each day to sit in silence. Even as little as a couple of minutes can help clear your mind and calm your body so you can be more present and productive.

Sitting in silence without talking or using any electronic equipment isnít easy. A recent study at the University of Virginia found that 67% of men tested and 25% of women hated the idea of being silent for just 15 minutes. They said they would actually prefer a mild electric shock to having to sit alone in silence.

This dislike for silence is not a new thing. Blaise Pascal, a French philosopher in the seventeenth century, said, "All human evil comes from this: our inability to sit still in a chair for half an hour.Ē

So consider mastering the art of  sitting in silence a few minutes each day in 2015. You donít have to chant, "Om,Ē or become a mystic, just slow down and tune out once a day.

The other valuable time to be silent in the coming year is if you have a sore throat or vocal fatigue. Silence (vocal rest) is whatís called for in these instances. To read more about the value of vocal rest, see my post, Restoring a Fatigued Voice. 

Vocal rest is especially important if you have to be on the air or tape a voiceover. In the time that youíre not in front of the mic, practice silence. Let your damaged vocal tissue rest so it will heal faster. Donít force yourself to make sound when your vocal folds clearly donít want to.

I encourage you to try letting silence work for you in the coming year. You may find that you are more productive and less likely to have vocal problems.

- See more at: http://onlinevoicecoaching.com/?page_id=1247&mc_cid=e85f6906fd&mc_eid=a06e28dbfb#sthash.GxuvBYX7.dpuf
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Comments (6)
Bobbin Beam
1/9/2015 at 8:14 PM
Hi Ann
YES! You've hit the mark on this post. We're too distracted by too many shiny objects and doing it to ourselves. I agree we need to give our minds and vocal folds a rest with our sites on the long haul in voice over!
Best,
Bobbin Beam
Debbie Grattan
1/9/2015 at 7:52 PM
I wonder, does silence count when you're reading a book, looking at email, watching TV or a movie? That's certainly resting the vocal cords, but not necessarily the mind. Although... it is disengaging from tasks/work and allowing a rest for the mind in that sense. Is it really just being quiet with the throat, or is it being quiet with the mind and body that you're saying is important?
Katherine Curriden
1/9/2015 at 5:33 PM
THANKS...it is always good to be reminded that some silence is golden for the voice and for the mind!
Ann S. Utterback
1/9/2015 at 4:47 PM
Larry & DebbyóThanks so much for your comments! I'm so glad my article resonated with you. I think once you discover what "unplugging" can do for you it becomes part of your day that's a necessity, not a luxury!
Keep it up
"Doc" Ann U.
Larry Wayne
1/9/2015 at 3:25 PM
Ann..

LOVE the suggestion to be silent for awhile! It is refreshing to put your mind in neutral for a few minutes!
Debby Barnes
1/9/2015 at 11:28 AM
This really appealed to me, Doc. (...as I affectionately refer to you. :) I'm an honest to goodness contemplative at heart and I can say with assurance - being deliberate about being still is healing, revealing and helpful. Thanks a bunch.
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