On conviction: Just how much do you mean (believe) it?

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We were three hours into her full-day strategy session and were putting the final touches on her Rooftop Message – the stand she is committed to taking in all of her speaking, writing, and service offerings. This Rooftop Message is the core message driving all of the work she would be doing in the future. It was one of the main goals of her VIP strategy day and complete clarity on this is critical to the success of any message-driven business. 
So you can see how essential it is that we get the Rooftop Message really right. 
Which is why when I read back to her the message we had so thoughtfully crafted, I was surprised at her response. 
“Yeah… that's pretty much it,” she said lightly. 
I looked at her carefully, studying her face and body posture. Everything I saw confirmed what I heard in her voice – she was not committed to this message we created. 
“This is not what you want to say, is it?,” I asked. 
“Well… I mean, it is, I guess… I don't know…,” she trailed off. 
And this is when I knew we had to begin again – because there is no “I guess… I don't know” when it comes to the stand you are taking with your work. Not when you are committed to changing lives – and attracting clients through sharing this message in speaking and writing.  
We have got to hear your conviction every single time you talk about your work. 
What does conviction look and sound like?
Think back to the last conversation you had that fired you up. Maybe you were debating an issue. Possibly you were convincing someone to do something that you really wanted them to do. You might have been reacting to something you heard or saw earlier in the day and were sharing it with a friend or partner. 
Listen to your voice as you remember that conversation. Can you hear that greater speed, volume and voice variety as you spoke? This is what your voice sounds like when you are talking about something with full conviction. 
Check out your body language. Notice in this memory how you are leaning forward a bit (or a lot), moving your hands more than usual, and using more direct eye contact. These are all non-verbal signs of conviction. 
This expression of conviction is actually inspired by a feeling of conviction. The voice and body language is the natural outward expression of this powerful conviction feeling. 
It won't surprise you to hear that research continually supports the fact that expressed conviction elements are some of the most powerful elements of influence. Those voice fluctuations and hand gestures, that direct eye contact and leaning forward stance – those all evoke confidence. They captivate attention and help keep it. 
So the key is to be sure that the stand you take in your speaking, writing and your service offerings – is always expressed exactly in the way you believe with all your heart and soul. It must be in full alignment with your conviction. 
Let's do a quick check-in for you: think about your last speaking event or even conversation with a potential client or collaborator. 
Can you hear the conviction in your voice when you talk about your work?
If not, use these questions to dig in further:
  1. Are you taking a powerful stand for exactly what you believe will make the biggest impact for those you are meant to serve?
  2. Are you focusing on serving precisely those you feel most committed to serving?
If your answer is “no” to either of those questions, spend some time getting realigned with your Rooftop Message and who you are meant to serve with it. I promise, that alignment will automatically make a profound impact on the way you speak and write about your work.