Have you ever–this is a silly question because I’m pretty sure everyone has–heard your voice on a recording and thought it sounded weird? Like, there’s no way I really sound like that?
Okay, you have. And so have I. I don’t think about it a lot, mostly because it’s not that important, but also because it’s one of those things that would drive me crazy to think about too much.
Plus, I generally don’t like how I sound on recordings. When I was younger, I thought I sounded babyish. As I got older, I thought I sounded too serious. Maybe I was both of those things, in turn. Maybe I still am. But I prefer to presume people hear my voice how I hear it when I say something, despite knowing it’s not true.
Then I heard myself speak on a recording at work. My coworker was recording us talk about a presentation (so she could take notes later, which was unnerving to experience, but there was no stopping her, and I suppose I have to admit it was effective). When I played it back later to transcribe part of our script, I was shocked for 2 reasons.
First of all, I couldn’t even recognize my voice, and it was hard for me to distinguish when I was talking and when my coworker was. And secondly, once I could figure out whose voice was mine, I realized I liked it. I didn’t sound too serious (only the right amount of serious). I didn’t sound babyish (almost professional, if you can possibly say that about me). My voice sounded pretty good.
I’m not planning on making a habit out of recording myself now that I know I’ve reached a point in my life where I finally like what others hear when they listen to me. And it still sounds very little like what I hear when I talk. But it’s nice to be in your 30s and discover something new you like about yourself. I highly recommend it.