Please help me rephrase the title in case it doesn't properly reflect the content, or isn't professional enough
I am at the same company since I finished education. I was quite enthusiastic about my function from the very beginning and saw some early promotions to senior contributor and then manager. I feel that this was partly also because I was very loyal to the company's goals when the team fell out with senior management strategies (many seniors left or were fired) and as a direct consequence the company saw incredible growth.
Being a strict, "command-and-control" environment though, my own growth (both as a contributor and a manager) was in skills such as implementing and enforcing, always doing whatever the boss asked, finding solutions to functional tasks and solving detailed problems rather than questioning at the grand picture level. Disagreeing with the boss was pretty much prohibited at the company. It was common to shoot the messenger as well, so I made sure I always brought good news only :)
Now that I am working even more closely with the board of directors, I am increasingly asked for my opinion and strategies on a larger scale... and I often react with a blank confused expression on my face - my brain goes blank as if I cannot think/reflect anymore because I am used to be told what to do, or maybe I am just dumb. Actually, the first thing I think is something like "What can I say that will make them happy?" - and I know this is not good/honest.
How can I [re-]gain my ability to think strategically and at the big picture, and then convey my opinion without being shot down?