Voice problems - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Voice problems


I've always had a quiet voice because of my anxiety. As a result, people would always ask me "what?" and I got so tired of having to say everything twice. There was a time when I was younger when someone asked me why I talk like that. I don't know what they meant by "like that" but I think it was referring to my weak sounding voice. My social anxiety got even worse because I was always so self conscious about my speech. I tried to see a speech therapist at my university once because I was even convinced I had some type of speech problem, but she said my speech was perfectly fine. Dissatisfied by this answer, I did some research online and saw that anxious people often speak from the throat instead of breathing deeply and using the diaphraphm to speak. I've found various diaphragm training exercises online and try to do these about 20 minutes every morning. I notice a huge difference in the way I sound when I do this - and I feel more confident! When I don't have time to do this in the morning, I get so mad because I fall back to my old habit of speaking from my throat and then deal with people constantly asking me to repeat myself.
Has anyone else noticed a connection between social anxiety and voice volume? When I can speak with a more powerful voice, my anxiety's very low. But I hate how it's so easy for me to go back to my old way of speaking. Any advice on how to stop doing this?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 01:41 PM
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I don't have any advice just wanted to say that I can definitely relate although instead of volume it's more that I tend to mumble a lot because of my social anxiety

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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 03:21 PM
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I have this issue constantly. Every once in a while, for a few hours, it seems like my voice will "catch", and it feels full and louder, and I can speak with ease, but most of the time, I feel like I have to use much more force to speak at all, and it still comes weak and quiet, and cracks easily. I assume it's related to the anxiety.

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 03:36 PM
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yeah same problems

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NPC Shawn View Post
I have this issue constantly. Every once in a while, for a few hours, it seems like my voice will "catch", and it feels full and louder, and I can speak with ease, but most of the time, I feel like I have to use much more force to speak at all, and it still comes weak and quiet, and cracks easily. I assume it's related to the anxiety.
Yeah, same here. When I can "speak with ease," I tend to like to speak a lot more. Like this afternoon when I talked to my wife, it was one of those times, and we had a nice conversation. And a few days ago, I talked to a neighbor for quite a while.

Other times, my voice doesn't seem to work. It seems like during those times, I also don't seem to be able to think clearly.

I don't know what's going on with that.

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 06:45 PM
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Beside the point that I speak very little, I have quite quiet voice as well... Even if I try to say something loud, often it turns out to be muffled or somehow else not really understandable to others...

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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 07:38 PM
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When our body experiences anxiety, we tend to breath with our chest, rather than our belly. That leads to a strangled voice, as your voice chords contract and are effectively spent on shallow breathing.

I definitely had this problem in the past. The solution for me personally was learning to breath through my belly even in stressful situations. Deep breathing exercises done daily work miracles!
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-16-2019, 09:00 PM
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I also have this problem. some days im ok, but mostly im clearing my throat constantly trying to get my voice back.

but my advice is to work on speaking from the chest on your own and get used to it. it may sound like youre speaking very loudly to yourself but video it so you know its actually a regular volume.


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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 01:04 AM
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I'm quiet when it's new people, I tend to mumble a lot or struggle to know what to say and get words out. But once I'm comfortable with someone it gets a little bit better. But I also do have a speech problem, which of course doesn't help.
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 06:26 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Maslow View Post
Yeah, same here. When I can "speak with ease," I tend to like to speak a lot more. Like this afternoon when I talked to my wife, it was one of those times, and we had a nice conversation. And a few days ago, I talked to a neighbor for quite a while.

Other times, my voice doesn't seem to work. It seems like during those times, I also don't seem to be able to think clearly.

I don't know what's going on with that.

I totally feel the same. Like as if my voice doesn't work sometimes. I don't know why this happens either. It's really annoying.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 05-17-2019, 07:04 AM
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@sylrae55 Don't feel so self-conscious about it. What if your parents were also quiet and introverted and that's the way they were talking with you? Or/and they wouldn't talk that much to you at all so your emotional and stimulation needs were neglected since the time you were born. People who don't talk quietly like us grew up in a different environment. If their environment was the same, they would talk just like you. Don't compare yourself to them because that's not fair at all. This is what I'm like and this is why I had and still have same problems you talk about and, of course, that's why I have social anxiety because even social anxiety on its own is just a symptom of such or other problems in childhood in many cases. So this is not a ''voice problem'' per se.

I don't know if speech training can do much in the long run because you'll start feeling insecure again for different reasons and your habit of talking quietly will go back and you wouldn't be able to control it because of emotions. Maybe not, maybe your voice technique really helps to be in control 100%, I don't know. I don't even know if that's possible without certain emotional component, no matter how good the technique they offer is. But I know that's what would happen in my case. I know that training like that would only help me and would worth it if I got generally better psychologically. I got a little better so far due to therapy and someone else who's being often emotionally supportive to me, but it's not better enough. Btw after I had a really good session (which happens really rarily to me, I experienced just a couple of such sessions during the whole time in therapy), I noticed how I was automatically breathing deeper. I don't remember breathing like that so it was a little unusual. I had to be in public after that session and was having a panic attack, but somehow I was able to calm down my breathing by remembering the support and involvment of the therapist on that session. It didn't last for a long time. Only for the whole evening. So yeah :/

When it comes to me, I'm not only super quiet, but I also sound hoarse quite often. It's because my whole body is tense and this is just another habit just like the quiet voice one. It's (often unexpressed, unconscious) emotions, feelings manifesting themselves in the body. I was never aware of it because for me it's a ''natural state'', but other people have been saying that to me and pointing that out since childhood. When they would tell me to ''relax'', to ''put your shoulders down'' etc, I would not know how to do that because I don't know how it even feels. It's so sad people judge you by themselves and they think other people are or should be just like they are. It's a simple ignorance you should brush off. But then when you're not aware of why you're this way you believe them and start feeling worse because you feel abnormal and helpless. This is how I felt before I found out about the reasons just a couple of years ago.

Sorry for my English.
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