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Can A Person’s Voice Tell You About The Person Inside?

Woman Listening
Oli Scarff, Getty Images

Can a person’s voice really tell you about the person inside?  Does a person’s voice say happy or sad, black or white, does it tell you about their self esteem, it they are a nice person or not?  Can a person’s voice clue you into whether or not that individual is goodhearted?

Being in radio over 30 years, as one might expect, audio is very important to broadcasters.  We ‘listen’ for a living.  How does the radio station sound in the car, at home, in the office, on big speaker or just a tiny radio and we also must listen to the voices of people.  In 30 years, I’ve talked to thousands of people on the phone, in person, live on the air not to mention all the recorded audio I’ve heard over the years.

So what’s in a voice?  I think if you really listen to people speak, you can tell everything.  Everything!  I believe you can tell if they’re hurting inside, if they are happy, if they are telling the truth or not, and just how good a person is deep down in their hearts.  Some research states that you might also be able to tell a person ethnicity too.  I’ve gotten to the point in my life, I can tell if a person’s feeding me a line of nonsense right off the bat.  And most of the time, I know in about 30 seconds whether I like the person or not.  However, these days, I can usually tell if there’s another person hiding inside.  I tell this story about one of my dear friends all the time.  He was the brother of my roommate in college and we all went to high school together.  I thought he was a jerk, and that’s putting it nicely, early on in his life.  But I always thought, he wasn’t really like that on the inside.  Well as it turns out, he wasn’t.  He and his family ended up living about a mile from me in my adult life and we remain very good friends to this day.  He’s a really good person.  Much different than the harsh exterior he once painted.  So you can’t always judge a book by it’s cover.

Can you hear the hurt in a song?  Adele’s ‘21‘ album, one of the biggest selling albums of all time, is about her broken heart.  You can hear it in her voice.  You didn’t need to watch an interview with Adele to figure this out.  You might be thinking, well of course you know it’s songs about hurt, just listen to the words.  Ah, but it’s not just the words of the songs, it’s the way she delivered them.  If someone else sang those songs, you would hear lyrics, melody and notes.  Adele experienced those songs, wrote those songs and her voice takes the listener through the journey.  I’ve heard many people with great voices cover many of the songs from ’21’ and it’s just not the same.  I believe Adele.

A Stanford University study found that people ‘hear’ personality in the voices of others, and that the sound of one’s voice biases opinions about everything from credibility to sexual prowess.  If you speak slow or fast, deep voiced or high-pitched, take pauses between sentences, talk soft or loud all says ‘something’ about the person you are inside.  And if you try to change your speaking habits, you may find this very difficult to do…the person inside will always find a way out.

[Via:  AOL, Wikipedia]


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