Confidence and your voice: Your accent

This month is friendship month, and building on last week’s blog and video about confidence in your voice, this week we’re talking about confidence in your accent. A lot of people that I talk to, both within my singing or speech lessons, and generally in life, say to me that they hate their accent. And I think that’s really sad. Accents are brilliant. They are what make us as unique as we are. And the fact that we’re starting to lose some of these regional dialects and regional accents is sad.

Accent

Don’t try and change it. It is what it is. And for me, my accent is slightly bonkers. It isn’t anything particular. It’s a bit of various things. And as I’ve said in other videos, what it is, is clear. So when I speak, what you are hearing is my accent, but I’m speaking clearly so you can really understand the words.

So I want you to think about your accent, start embracing it as you. But if you feel that your accent means that people don’t understand what you are saying, consider rather than changing your accent, slowing it down a little bit. Admittedly for some accents, slowing down can change it a tiny bit. But slow down and be a bit clearer with what you’re saying.

Don’t change the word sounds that you use and don’t even change the words you use. Bairn, canny and plodge, for me, are wonderful northern words and I use them a lot. I’ll be honest, I might not use them if I’m talking to somebody who I know isn’t going to understand them within the context. But I do use them a lot of the time because it’s my accent, it’s my dialect, it’s how we speak.

But as I’ve said, I slow it down. So start thinking about your accent and starting to love and embrace it for what it is. Think about if you can make those sounds clearer. And by clearer I mean more separate. Work out what the sound is.

When I say ‘me’, I’m using an E sound. I know that and I’m not going to change it to something that doesn’t fit with my accent (see the video for an actual spoken example).

So embrace the accent. It’s part of you. You are unique. Get that confidence in it.

I can help you work with that. Come and find me.