The Inside Voice

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It’s not the dark but the light that frightens us.”

– Marianne Williamson

Do you understand what this means? Let me ask it a different way.

Do you talk to yourself? Interesting. Me too.

Do you respond when you talk to yourself? Probably.

Many years ago, my mom said that it’s ok to talk to yourself as long as you don’t respond. I actually believe we respond to ourselves, more than we realize especially because most of the time our mouth isn’t even moving. It’s in our minds!

One of the earliest people to make talking to yourself a thing, was Vincent Van Gogh. When I said his name, your inside voice probably said, “Oh yeh the painter, the painter who painted the sunflowers,” or “Wasn’t that the guy who chopped off his own ear?”

That’s not the part I want to discuss. Let’s talk about before all of that when Van Gogh was young like us and trying to figure out where life would go.  Van Gogh didn’t know what he wanted to do. All he knew was that he didn’t like the banal nature of school and he made it clear in many of his letters, that he didn’t want to be anyone’s employee!

What a lot of people don’t talk about is the fact that Vincent Van Gogh didn’t know how to draw or owned a single paintbrush when he had his own internal conversations. He saw paintings and drawings that inspired him and wanted to do the same for the world with his own art so he simply taught himself for many years, with the help of his mentors.

In our early years, our loved ones either helped us ignore our inside voice or recognize it. Through our formative years, we pretended we couldn’t hear it by checking success boxes because our inside voice usually starts off whispering.

Even though we ignore the whispers, and we check the boxes and we marry the love of our lives, get to the best shape of our lives and we graduate from the number one MBA institution in the world, deep deep down, there’s a voice, our inside voice whispering, “Are you sure? Is this happy?”

We smile with our friends and we laugh and as we walk to Voyeur or Pub, deep deep down, there’s a voice, inside voice whispering, “Are you sure? Is this happy?”

Smile if you’ve been to Voyeur. See? You’ve at least tasted happiness! And I have good news! The real truth is some of us are going to our dream jobs, some of us have settled for whatever job and some of us, still have none! Now, we, the Class of 2019 are all bound together because we are graduating with 863 humans (please don’t fact check this) in every industry of the world!

That dream that you have? Someone who has graduated from Wharton or will graduate from Wharton can help you achieve it.

Next time you hear your inside voice, remember these 3 things:

  1. Remember who you are.
  2. Remember whose you are.
  3. Remember the intellectual powerhouse of an army that stands in front of you, that sits behind you and surrounds all of us here at Wharton, ready and willing to support your happy!

“Our deepest fear is not that

we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It’s not the dark but the light that frightens us.”

About Renee Daniel, WG'19

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