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tv   Veronica Rueckert Outspoken  CSPAN  August 11, 2019 6:00pm-7:03pm EDT

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extraordinary country like the united states of america. >> to watch the rest of the talk visit our website and type his name in the search box at the top of the page. >> welcome to the book company, estate 3677 of us being a business. [applause] and it's time for tonight speaker. veronica is an award-winning communications specialist formally host of several shows of wisconsin public radio. she is also a producer and contributor to wisconsin public radio's to the best of our knowledge. she conducts media training and national media outreach at the university of wisconsin madison. her blue book outspoken by women's voices get silent and how to set them free has one
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from different reviews who offered the state. her own literary voice is encouraging supportive interval. in hard to imagine anyone who would not benefit from her advice in a seat of self-help, this one stands out for its unique perspective in concrete recommendation. with that give a big hand for veronica rickert. >> thank you so much. i'm going to write where i forgot to take out my book. [applause] if you ever had any doubt that the voice is an instrument do you have it now? wow. that was all over the ring.
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i want to say welcome and thank you so much for coming out tonight and huge thankful to daniel for having me here and i'm delighted to be here gathering together and listening to voices and talking about voices. it's something that means a lot to me and i'm very grateful you're here and you care about voices too. i'm grateful for your interest. i hope it challenges you, is persia and it shakes things up for you in terms of what do you think is possible in the world. and what you're capable of doing with your own voice. i want to start tonight by asking you a question and i asked at all my workshops. if you know what i'm looking for, answer how you really feel. how many of you love your voice.
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i see five -ish. good. most of you did not. percentagewise are the anybody raise their hands. in fact that number was a little high. usually nobody raises their hand especially in the first groups of women when asked for the fundamental questions do you love your voice and i thought okay, well i think these people are self-selecting on my workshop because they have a troubled relationship with their voice. then i started asking my talks. there would be 200 teachers or 100 businesswomen or students and by the way the students were the best for raising their hands.
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but hardly anybody raise their hands. but then there little more likely to raise her hands but i did not see anyone but one person. especially with women i care a lot about women's voices because they face these challenges and it's important because the voice is who we are and where we grew up, it's the way our parents sat around the kitchen table, the region of the country we live in, how we feel about ourselves, respect of her own ideas and opinions and feelings. it takes all these things and send them out into the world the voice is you. and i believe the voice is a true reflection of who we are than almost any other measure. that thought important. and so, i think what we need to
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do is really think this relationship, rewire it. for most of us is an instrument. it's how you communicate in your sense of self, but it's still an instrument and an incredible instrument and i see it as having a state-of-the-art for ari in your garage and what do you do with it, you drive 20 miles an hour around the block. that's how much under most of us treat our voices. in a credible instrument that we think learning about love and using a tool that can change your life. i want to help you do, i'm going to turn around and get to know it and get to learn a little bit how to change my view of this. this is not easy. especially for women, there is
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lots of reasons to feel like we should not talk. and we are being silenced or marginalized when reducing. you may be a little crazy if you're not somebody that is good at talking, you might be wrong about that because there is a growing audio data that shows there's very real influences that are marginalized and i'll tell you, i'm going to share a fraction of the research with you. i will show a little bit. i won't do it all because will be crying by the end but i want to share a little bit. a yell study, hypothetical women ceos were rated in terms of competency down 14% when they cost more than their peers.
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so responded to said -- is a people that responded were asked about male ceos and said if he talks more than his peers what do you think happened to his competency. it went up by 10%. the woman and plays a part cost more often, that's a pretty strong reason not to talk. we probably internalize those feelings in talking more and getting a strange feeling about my voice. you might be right, it may not be a. and then i talk about the next one a lot. it's like a sucker punch to the gut. university school of law. they wanted to know if having a lot of power for women like they were immune to a lot of the
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stuff like their voice as being interrupted. they found that women supreme court justices were interrupted as three times the rate of male justices. three times. women on the u.s. supreme court and there was no immunity there. how does it not make a woman immune when she speaks. so even the women on the court had to advance. this is really interesting, what do you think happened over the course of time when the women is on the court. what these researchers thought is that the women adopted. they began by using sentences to coach things a little more politely and they would say excuse me, i would like to add thank you, phrases like that that launched them politely into the discourse and the argument that were studied and they were
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interrupted. i don't know if that's a victory. they just jump in and just interrupt in the herd more often. there is a learning curve, their voices are suppressed. and we don't get the unique contribution of these legal mites. they are not allowed to speak the same way. hopefully as the court changes and we see more women this will change to. women get interrupted in general where the men get interrupted and they get interrupted by women and by men. it is both there. how many of you have seen the movie frozen? did you love it? i love this movie. my daughter is here we all loved
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it we know all the songs and i was feeling the good about that. it's a princess powered movie about two women who learn that the love between sisters is more important than any guy. it turns out the relationship between the sisters is what is important and as i was researching outspoken i learned that even in frozen the men talk more. men have more line than women. i stop singing the songs for week but i'm singing them again. i think they could do better. this is the version that young women see. our children see an generation grow up seeing men talking to the women. almost every kid watches. by the way, frozen is not unique
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there is more there and it is troubling. that is just the beginning. it's an overview of what is out there. many more examples in the book. i don't tell you this to impress you but i know you're not crazy, it's out there when you feel these feelings that your voice is being marginalized and not been heard or you're at a meeting and you have an idea and you voice it and nobody says anything anything maybe that was not a lady and then steve sitting two people away says the idea and everyone goes steve that is an amazing idea. and you turn around and you like what just happened. so maybe you're not crazy. this stuff is happening for real and were starting to measure it.
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they are part of the solution and we want to bring them along for this. the world needs everybody's voice. it is really important right now and were waking up to that finally. i hope this book is building awareness for you, i hope this book also helps you feel less alone so there's a lot of fans in here who i asked who have that experience. a lot of people have had that experience. a lot of this is shared storytelling. i heard so many stories as i wrote this book and a lot of this made me feel less alone and the things i'd experienced in my life and my career and i want to share one with you. it is about a woman named audrey who was watching the great recession unfold she was in a different career and she had a got level calling. she thought i should be helping. i do this, when you see
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something that you know you can do this. so she did and she went back to school and got a different degree and she got her masters and she became a bank regulator in a major yesterday. she showed up with an all-male team at a bank that they were going to be working with in the bank president walked in and he had a folder like this and he held it in the air and he said who wants the first one. and audrey was super up for this so course she raised her hand this is why she was here and got the degree. in the bank president caused and he looked at her and in front of the room of all these guides and colleagues said sweetheart you don't know how. and she was livid. he said her face went up in
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flames but she did not say anything. she just let it go. and later she told her boss and said this happened and i'm not happy with her. and he said that the bad guy, he is from the south. like being from the south explain anything. she knew the bank president was younger than she was and less educated. she had more degrees than he did. and that was her introduction to bank relation. so she thought okay, that was unpleasant i hope that was a one and done and think. it ended up being the tone for the rest of her time and regulation. she said she always felt like she was on the outside and she realized when she would work at the national level that women's voices were not heard. she told me a story about an
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older woman who was in the field longer and women simply stop going to meetings she stopped cold because no one listen to her ever. no one even noticed. she stopped going and audrey herself had a different technique she would ask the male colleague to put her idea on the table for her. and i said when it you just ask if they would help support you when you put the idea out there. and she just threw her head back and laughed. she said they would never do it. in looking back now i said let's go back to the day with the bank president what would you have done differently and she did not posit second and she said i would've blown up the room. she said it's hard work and extra work and it comes with emotional cost but that is what you have to do. over and over and over you have to blow up the room. that was her solution preach he did not do it then but she's not
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a shy person she's in a edible storyteller incredibly ambitious and even though she was very successful in the field she left it. that some of the hidden cost of this marginalizing of women's voices, we lose talent and lose people who give up and think this is not the place are not welcome here and we lose the passion and expertise and diversity of voices. but there is good news about audrey, she is running herself for a political run. she comes from political stock and i expect anytime in the next couple of years we will see her name on the ballot. i'm excited about that. i hope that you take some of the story and outspoken and you share them. and you share them with your friends and your colleagues and talk about what they mean to you and what you experience. they are just pulling the lid off this thing. have you noticed there's a new
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lexicon around women's communication. does everyone know man's flaming? my husband knows it. it's good to know you to have these feelings and these words to share them. man's breading is another one, man percolation, their common cheek words, under kind of funny. it also describes an experience that is shared with something magical about when we have a word for something instead of walking away feeling achy "after words" you can say that is what happened and thousands and thousands of other women know what that means and they feel it too. i am not alone. there is power in naming things and power in storytelling and i
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hope you will go out and do both of those things as you get more and more empowered to use your voice. so really using your voice is what my book is about. i want you to learn to love your voice and use your voice. it is not easy. it's a journey. i hate it when 70 says something is a journey. it makes me want to plop down on my cot again. it's a pulling of the wheels in a direction and thinking about our voices. but in terms of how we start, we can start by learning about the voice and how it works. how many of you here have had any training either singing or yoga we work with the breath. that is a good group. that is nice so that gives you a foundation with working on the voice and it's something i had and i would not trade it for
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anything. it's been valuable. in my life. i start the first two chapters of the book about learning how the physiology of the voice works. it is only instrument, that's housed in the body and that makes it -- we don't really know what is going on and also makes it personal. so when someone criticizes your voice it feels really personal because it's part of your body and that the natural reaction. it's also hard to talk about because it's right there. so if someone was looking at your hair and commenting really about it. think about this, the last election how many adjectives did we hear with female politician voices. more women in the media on the radio. so much free advice or thoughts
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given about the way a woman's voice sounds. people will say shrill is a favorite one. all of this has been okay to say. i'm not sure why but it has been. it's commenting about the body very personal. but we still have that message where we get uncomfortable when women speak and public. there is a history there about why we feel that way. aristotle, silence is the glory of women but not equally glory of man. so women are glorious and apparently mute but men get to speak and that's their glory. team leader says, he's talking about his daughter and he says her voice was ever soft gentle and low an excellent thing in
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women. so women had expectations to be quiet, talk gently and low. and maybe to be silent totally. and we still have that, it's still in great, we may not feel it, it's not something we talk about but when you hear shrill, harsh, grading, ice pick in your year, that is essentially what you're hearing. we don't have the same kind of conversation about men's voices. if you look at the last election you had hillary clinton whose voice was torn apart and why do we hate her voice, and advocates everyday, your bernie sanders and donald trump with these incredibly tattered nasal unpleasant voices. [laughter] that maybe want to reach for a glass of water and go but down and cleared her throat.
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but no one said anything about that. it did not matter. or if you look at the radio host, he turned around the way radio voices can sound. he is a man. with a vocal side who probably resonates right through his nose. but no one cares because apparently he's very good at his job, he's also a man. but the reason i know still daily and twitter talking about the rebuke of their voices from listeners. as far as vocals, does anyone know what vocal cry is? it is a method of vocal production which is currently popular with young women and a lot of people think it originated in england with older men but now popularized here among young women as local changes. it's like bacon sputtering in the pan.
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it is really lowering of the voice and it gives an air of nonchalance as well but there's something interesting about that, older generations came to universally hate that. radio host susan from npr said she finds it unlovely and she cannot stand it and she contrives to coach the people she interviews out of that. but younger generations of women there is research that shows that they hear that in the here howard. and self-assurance. so there's a generational divide so who is in charge of hiring and usually older people, people later career and often men. so this is a very difficult thing young women. i've had people tell me more than once that they hear two
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points. we do have strong reactions and that's okay. as long as were aware of the reactions and where they're coming from anna for having a negative reaction and we think i'm feeling this person is less capable because her voice sounds like x, y, and z we need to push back against ourselves and say that's not okay that's biased and i'm going to listen to how this person's ideas are formed, the content of their mind, answers, that is what is important and make people of the organization aware as well. younger women have enough going against him. there is a lot of pressure, we need to help them move beyond some of these and not lean into somebody's bias that we have. i was thinking again about how it begins with the breath and
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it's in the lower abdomen, this is where these deep nourishing breaths come from the support of voice, those breaths help, anxiety literally it helps you. shallow breath make us feel anxious. but if we sink into a lower breath there is evidence that combs the nervous system and we can move into a state of calmness. that can only happen if we work with her belly. but, here's the problem, what happened for women, what have we been told since five years old about her belly. suck it in. it is really hard to forget that one. it's something we need to constantly remind herself.
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to take a deep breath my belly has to expand. when i work with women in my workshop and classes it is often fairly difficult and there's usually a few women in the workshops who literally cannot accept that your belly expands like you're blowing a balloon. if you blow air into the blue you get bigger. same thing with our bellies. because we are so used to not doing that at any cost. we tried to suck it in it's hard to breathe and then you put it with the fact that women tend to not take up a lot of space. we go to something i called the lady pretzel which is crossing length and crossing arms. if you look for women -- i looked online and it's so hard to find women that are broader
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stanzas unless there's models and exaggerated. i think that's one thing we can work on, since were not too crowded try it. cross your legs, a nice tight leg cross and then crush her arms as tight as you can and now try to take a deep low belly breath. from the feet of power. is it kind of hard? it is kind of hard isn't it. now on cross your arms and uncross your legs. maybe her knees are a few inches apart. shoulders are back, chest expanded. now take a nice low breath. how does that feel?
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better? we have to give ourselves permission to her bodies to take up space. when we give ourselves permission with the body then the voice gets a sport in knees. it's hard to feel they are commanding the room or commanding yourself when you're in a little tiny footprint make it hard for you to breathe. and then, on top of that a lot of us. -- when your military grade undergarments make it hard to breathe. imagine this. this is what a lot of women are up against. were feeling like her voices have been marginalized and were wearing incredibly aggressive shaper. does that not sound like an
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eluding scenario. it is hard and we want to come in and use voices that are strong and confident and we want to bring the power inside out and with the scenario it is really difficult. to tell you to bring your things which i still think would be okay. and you have my support if you do this. but do not wear them when you need to speak. especially public speaking days or days when it's important you feel really at home in your body, calm in your mind and ready to seize whatever comes at you. do not wear them on that. give your voice all the support in knees. your voice needs a lot of support is a lot of stuff coming out her voices that is marginalized so important to do what you can to support your vocal instrument and really get out there and share what you have inside. and so, at the end of the day that is really what is it about. coming at home in your body is a
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place that is the seat of your voice and a seat of so much more that you are. and all of us beg the question do i have to change my voice? people asked me this, do i have to change my voice, no of course you do not need to change your voice. i am also working with the voice so it reflects who you were on the inside. a lot of times women come to me in their professional women and may be partners and law firms, they may be doctors giving speeches, head talks, they're pretty high up in their careers and they say i get great reviews when i speak but i feel crappy "after words" like not at home doing it. people say i'm a good speaker. that's because there's an alignment of who we really are inside and how her voice conveyed that.
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so either often is the case, a person feels a lot of power and a lot of insurance but when it comes times to talk the voice sounds different. and what's going on voice doesn't reflect the power that i have and sometimes that does mean changing the voice. and working with the voice so it carries the power a little better and more strong with more strength. and sometimes that may mean something different but they're not letting themselves be themselves so in the past women had to be very careful and that meant women spoke, they cannot be too emotional because that was read as hysterical. women had to be really tandem with emotion. because that was a critique, a level against women for a long
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time or if they were to flat for their voice. then people would say they do not care they were not invested and not passionate. if you look at mail order they were the ones who had license to do it all. or they would speak in these voices and that was considered inspiring. but women did not have those options so they had very carefully modulated voices that did not have a lot of characteristics that caught the year. a lot of times these women come and say i don't feel right and it's because none of who they are has been allowed to be expressed from the voice. so in that case we want them to sound like themselves because we really do not feel good until we sound like ourselves and feel like ourselves inexperienced who we are in our voice.
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just like an athlete trained for a race or swimmer might work out with free weights, to change the body we could do the same thing with the voice. it is your choice. it is absolutely your choice to work with your voice the way you would like to. but the importance is to use the voice and to start thinking, if you're someone who hangs back a little and doesn't really go in to those places, i challenge you to do that. or if you're in a space where it's a male voice that is dominating or going first every time see what it's like if you're the first one to speak at the meeting or if you're the woman in the room to raise her hand and volunteer your thoughts. these are the things we can push ourselves to move into the spaces to know that this is out there and to speak anyway.
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i think i do a quick reading from the book. no account. [laughter] but i would love to hear your questions and we can wrap up with that. >> i read that babies have been interested and to show that these babies won't even cry in the rhythm of their mother's voice so don't you think is really important that women be confident and have emotionality since her infecting the entire human race? they're not just affecting males and females but everyone. and secondly i want to know if you've experienced and silenced especially in the writing profession? >> so the first question was about the importance of mothers in particular modeling voices
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that are heard in importance for the next generation and for everyone in the question was about me whether i experienced this. your first question, yes it's incredibly important. that we model for the next generation. there's modeling that we could do a home in her home lif our o. so that is something that we need to turn the wheel on and really start thinking consciously about -- i even have friends who say i'd rather not talk if i don't have to. i understand that and that is perfectly fine to be an introvert. there is nothing wrong with that. but it's important. just as you said to model this into push ourselves into these places.
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we have an obligation to use our voices. we do have to honor ourselves but i also think this is the point in time that we are waking up to this of women voices and other marginalized voices and helping one another as we go along and support each other. and to answer your question, i have been silenced and have these experienced not so much with writing, but as a person going through life i've been to those meetings as they talked about where i have an idea and no one says anything and ten minutes later someone else has an idea and a cop on the back and get a promotion. and you wonder what is going on and you feel baffled. i wish have known more of this than early in my career when that was damaging. but we can change that now. we have the power to change it
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together. how would you blow up her room? >> so i wish that roger was here and you would go oh, that's how. it's personal, i'm not saying that her story is the one solution, there's other solution and i talked other women who would've handled that different. but she would have said of course i know what i'm doing, i just came from my degree, i am prepared for this, i have years of experience and i know what i'm doing, you cannot talk to me like that. you attacked the behavior like a hip check and hockey. that is not okay. i don't care, it's not my job, if you're comfortable okay i'm sorry or maybe i'm not even
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sorry but i need to check this behavior right now so you don't do it again. and hopefully everyone else sees that was not okay we don't talk to anybody like this and here's what happens if you do. i imagine that would be easier to do today than it would've been when she experienced that. and were all going through this in learning as we go along and blowing up her room might be right for you but not summary us. the important thing is to not internalize and walk away with a collapsed feeling of shame but to take an action, maybe e-mail "after words", or maybe pulling him aside and saying what you said to me was not okay i did not like it and you cannot ever talk to me again like that. there are options here at the important thing is to address the behavior soon not walking away with the feeling of failure. and helping other women.
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>> i wanted to cap on a couple of things that i heard other places when were talking about the underwear. also npr interview i heard a woman, i think it was on ted talks and she suggested before going into a meeting or doing something that you know will have to talk, two or three minutes before stand like wonder woman and she said they've done test on it and it makes a difference just like you were saying spread the body and do the breath. it makes a difference. two or three minutes. >> i'm glad you brought that up, huge referencing amy cut his
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work and what she calls power postures. that you assume your superhero posture like this. her research showed at the time that there was increased testosterone and capacity for risk so you felt like a man and may be entitled to take up the space. but there is something about that that that research was not able to be replicated. so other academics came along including a person who is co-authored and worked with her on the study and said no i'm distancing myself and i don't stand behind and it was not conducted well. that said, i'm very careful about that. a lot of people bring that up and i don't think necessarily a looking for the increased feeling of empowerment of risk-taking, in fact if you look it up there the whole new york
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times story the bloop social science and methodology and all cans of things. but, i do think if we rollback the shoulders giver test room to expand, or belly room to expand that naturally we will take these breath and give her body room and by doing so we can support our voices and have a bigger imprint and therefore we can be more present and were placed within the leadership role. so it's an interesting are you. there is something there the might not be exactly what amy said it was. >> i was thinking as you're talking about this, and how they tended to change the way they spoke to fit in to the dominant male paradigm and how the conversation is happening. i was thinking about a conference i've attended over the last couple of days where
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some of the male participants feel pretty entitled to take a whole lot of time like more than the allotted time to talk about what they feel like talking about. and a lot of that is changing the way and on women to participate in the dominant paradigm that is set by men. you see in your work any conversation about men changing how they talk? >> that is an interesting question. the question is referring to the supreme court study were the women on the court talk like men so they could get in and have their fair share of the conversation and their say in a panel where men talk a lot but the women are told that shrek is on them to alter how they speak. it's really interesting. i think it's something that is
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unfolding and complex. we put so much on the women already and now it's left to us to change so we can talk more. that is not the way to be. everyone has a stake in bringing all voices to the table women have a stake in women have a stake in it. if you notice, i don't know if you got the news item the head of the nih said he would no longer be on panels where there was allman. he will not go to the conferences anymore. that is something mink can do for instance. be aware that there's opposable panels bogus all dudes. people are being or attuned to that lately and this is not okay to have a culture of mail on this panel which is meant to give us a diversity of opinion and that is one way that can start to happen. there are things hr can do, this
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is something that can get comforted, but things that we can do to flip the equation. exercises the companies can do to say if you are the person who interrupts the most, we need to identify that and small groups and work shopping and what happens if you're the one, your role is to be the one who only test ten seconds to talk. sometimes you can run a timer on everybody at the meeting. there is a timer running and someone is talking and when it goes off you are done. and then have people come over, i guess i was talking a long time. or maybe for other participants, i don't have anything to say because i clam up. what is if you like them for talk for the full minute when
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they have to do these exercises. it's an awareness building moment we are in in the more we have gender equity on these panels and conventions and these other spaces where historically male dominated and the more equity we get the more we create space for new voices and different communication styles and different voices. things will not be like this forever but for now, i do think there is something going on the court. it is an act, they're getting their voices but converting what their role is. you can participate but not too much. you can talk but not dominate. even women on the court. they're turning the expectations around as a tool that i think women are being forced into but ideally this is a sure burden for everybody because we all have a stake in it.
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am i clear? let's wait till the microphone reaches you. thank you. >> i'm a spiritual person and god is a part of my life. i found some time ago another name for god is all the and i use that name, just recently i've had a thought that it is kind of like breathing, all is breathing in and it's breathing out. and if you think of this in those that have studied the spiritual and so forth, there is power there. so if the breathing in and out is a direct connection between
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the deepest part of your inter-resources, could that not be a source when you're talking about the voice and lifting up the voice of the person gets it in his head that it's a powerful thing, could that not be a source of power? >> 's sure i think that can be a tool especially for someone like you who considers himself a spiritual person. the breath is in many ways considered likely yoga tradition. it's considered the cord that binds body and the breath keeping us in the body so there's interesting things to explore. and it's really fascinating it's like the onion where there's always another layer. you can go that deep and consider the power.
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i don't think people do it so much anymore but lamaze were the breathing is bringing a new life into the world and power there, i think with the breath you can use it as a vessel for power and you can go as deep as you want. this is why it's a journey. the more you work the more it tells you and it tells you how you are feeling and what your mental status whether, or excited or scared. if you're related to breath changes into start learning to use it in a way that can enhance the rest of your life and it can change the rest of your life and the way you manage yourself in different situations and calm the mind if you're able to work with it like that and think of it as a journey it can be incredibly rewarding. >> we have a microphone coming over. thank you.
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is there any research around design that would better accommodate to fema woman voices questioning. >> there is is unfolding. it's fascinating and i cannot remember, it's in the book but essentially if we want women and men to be represented more equally in these meetings, one thing that works is to have a consensus model. this flies on the face of how most meetings are run in most places would not be thrilled to do this but instead of winner takes all where one faction of the meeting group can ram through by numbers their point of view because we've known it's usually going to be men in most scenarios, if we have a
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consensus model more like a jury, everyone has to agree then you get more women's voices. isn't that fascinating. i don't know if women are more geared toward consensus, and might also be you know your voice matters. everyone has to agree. that changes things. there's a way in these meetings for whoever is managing the meeting to say we are moving in this instance to consensus model to circuits more women's voices and moving closer to equity. in this part may be a little challenging to the way we think about it. but you need more women than men have women talking as much as men. it's not even 5050. it is maybe like 7030 with women to men in that scenario. it's a really great read if you want to dive into the studies
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but there is an ending this and bringing their awareness as well like we talked about here, who is talking most and how can we change the patterns around this. >> i don't know if this is true or not but i've been a member of a church choir for 30 years and the vast majority, the sopranos and al altos get the idea across more than men. >> that is interesting. i'm a former singer to an intended think back. my year always goes to the upper voices because i'm in tune to that but when some people sing
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with lower parts, and may be something, i cannot speak too much to that but it's a fascinating thought that there's something about those voices and also if you think about early classical music a lot of these times the composers were writing sacred music and in my history classes there was an idea that the voices more angelic and requires two and the high voice could even what came in first. that is interesting. >> when people are going deaf, those voices they lose first are high voices so they don't hear women around them. >> when people go deaf the high range goes. >> anyone else?
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>> how did you get involved in writing? >> in writing, well i've always wanted to be a writer, i'm an accidental talk show host and media trainer and there's a story in my book about how i got into radio and i went to wisconsin public radio because i wanted to write which makes no sense. [laughter] but i thought maybe i could write for radio. but there's a particular style to radio and i think you can see it in this book is more for that year. i went there to write and i ended up, the guy who gave me the tour the chief and officer took me around and we chatted and he said, you don't have any speech defects, you want to be on the air? [laughter] and inside i was thinking no. but of course you say yes when someone asked you. so i did and i ended up in this
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long career in radio and that sidelined me from ready. i always wrote on the side, i started freelancing for the alternative weekly in madison and i got drafted by the state journal and i reviewed theater for them and after i had my children i decided to get back into more creative writing so i wrote essays and some of those i put on national public radio. it's all been part of my life but this all came together as an opportunity to rate this book so i love when i get to wring parts of that into this book. there's lots of stories about my life and peppered in here with the rest of it. in the rest of nonfiction paid writing is something that you just keep writing matter what and even though i did not go to school to get the msa which
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almost did i thought of myself as being a writer. one more? >> i'm curious if there is a point at which children as they are growing up have a dynamic changes between who speaks more, girls and boys and i found the mother of a 14-year-old, he is a boy and i love him dearly and he is very smart, but i got his classroom over the years and to be honest and no offense to the boys, the girls are the ones that really seemed to shine and participate a lot more and get up in front of the classroom or than the boys so i'm wondering if there is an age in which that changes or educational system encourages boys over girls at some point? >> that is interesting, the
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question is when does it switch when they believe in the voiceless and boys talk more. i could talk a long time about this. the first thing was a study, i'm not going to be able to get it exactly right you have to look at. it was a research study looking at boys and girls and how they perceive their own gender. and so they were told a story about a super smart person in the other person is a super nice person one person was brilliant and one nice. they were asked at the end, they were shown a boy character in a character and asked which one was more likely to be the brilliant character an early on something -- i think the ages were five and six. both genders pick their own gender. boy said the boy was to be
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brilliant and the girl said the girl was to be more likely to be the brilliant. but then they did the same thing a couple years later and the boys both picked boys and the girls also picked boys. so the girls at a depressingly young age were questioning their own gender capacity for brilliant and they were thinking as the boys is a brilliant one. and it's incredibly troubling and there's also interesting research i found about how teachers, i'm not blaming them i love teachers. but some teachers researchers found will call on group settings like this they will call on boys by name and say alex tell us what do you think and they would never use the girls name, it showed up in the results and the researchers conclude that teachers unconsciously biased or
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encouraging boys to speak or not encouraging girls to speak in the same way. and there's all this pressure on girls to be perfect and another study i found with internal voice the girls have. in a group setting where girls are 13, 14, what happens when they decide girls are going through torturous mental acrobatics trying to decide whether they should speak or not. and really struggling so i might be embarrassed, and all of these really difficult things that ended up suppressing their voice were did not seem the boys were going to the same thing. there is a lot going on that we need to put our finger on. there is a founder of comedy and cheesy cheese girls and prompt and i love that she says is, girls do not need to do group
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improv. she says what really works for girls is to get them to see even the things that they consider lot about themselves as something they were in charge of something that was funny eight more to bring it. instead of bringing perfect whatever they were secure amp it up and it was funny. and girls could do it alone. where girls and improv you have to rely on your improv partners but the fact that girls got up there alone and commanded respect, had the microphone, had the room that was so important to them. there are things that we can encourage girls voices. one more and drop it up.
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>> as i understand there are cycles of equality and inequality throughout history for millions of years. twentieth century was a cycle towards the quality or towards inequality and as i believe women power strength in society has been growing during the 20th century. i could be wrong. . . .
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that's a tough one. let me say we are bending in the direction but progress isn't linear so we will move like an arrow in this direction but if we circle back on ourselve oursa zigzag and get lost and then had forward again i think things are moving in that direction that women have the power going in a different direction. but time will tell. we have to make the most of the moment to see what we can do to change things.
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>> any questions you didn't want in front of group people. thank you for coming and we hope to see you at another event. [applause] dot monday into new york i gave an interview and announced i was rejecting the plea. i haven't even told my lawyers i was going to do it. they would have told me not to. it's a good deal. you won't go to prison. if this is where justice in america has come down to then put me in prison the rest of my life. go ahead and give it but i'm not going to live


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