A wise man said: the key to happiness is to be content with what you have. Kind of contrary to the way we live today, isn’t it? More, bigger, better.

Many voice over talents become unnecessarily stressed about the way they sound, their signature sound. They think something is lacking. They listen to their voice and wonder if it’s good enough. Some people even cringe when the recorded voice they hear sounds nothing like the way they think they should sound. I’m not talking about your skill set here. This can always be improved, even if you are a seasoned pro. I’m referring to your degree of satisfaction with who you really are.

Many of us can change the sound of our voices, some of us quite dramatically. But no matter how hard you try, your sound will always be uniquely yours. So why, for many of us, is this just not good enough?

There’s one thing you should know. One of the textbook symptoms of neurosis is a lack of gratitude. We have so much, but barely appreciate and sometimes don’t even use, the gifts we have been given, the gifts we got for free.

A financial-services research firm estimates that of the $80 billion spent on gift cards in 2013, roughly $8 billion will never be redeemed. I remembered that study and felt proud of myself when I cashed a gift card at Starbucks on Saturday. But I felt pretty guilty while cleaning my office that same day when I realized I have not read even half the books on my own bookshelves. What a wealth of knowledge I am denying myself. What a gift I haven’t redeemed.

We have all been given much greater gifts than these. Remember this the next time you are tempted to demote, denigrate or degrade. Gratitude heals.

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Susan Berkley is a top voice over artist and founder of The Great Voice Company,

a company devoted to teaching great voices around the world

how to become successful voice over actors.

The Great Voice Company is an international leader in voice over training and in providing top quality voice over recordings in all languages to discerning businesses and marketers. For additional information visit