Saturday, October 8, 2016

Speaking in Public: two errors that lead to fear

First Error:      You believe that you are being actively judged by your audience.

Second Error:  You believe that the subject of your talk is you!

Well, actually, you are being judged by some people in the audience.  They might be thinking - "why did she wear that skirt? - it's too short, it's too long - why is he wearing brown shoes with a grey suit?
Would you look at that tie?  But, at that moment, that form of critique is None of Your Business.  Full Stop.

It will soon stop as soon as you engage them with your opening lines.  Which you should always fully memorise - and deliver with power and with vocal variety.

When you stand up to speak, the temptation is to believe that the audience is primarily interested in you.  They're not!  They're thinking - what has this person got that will be useful to me?  So believe that the the emphasis is not on you.  It's on them.  You need to negate this form of fear with the understanding that you are coming from a position of service. That you have got something valuable to share with them - your story, your experience, specific tips on the subject  you are sharing.

The audience is primarily interested in themselves.  They listen to your talk to learn something new that they can use in their own lives.

When you draft your talk - look to see where you can replace the word "I" with words like you, your, we, and us.  This reinforces the idea that the talk is not about You.  But about your audience.  Think about it as the idea that you are giving them something of value.

Quite different to the old style of speaking at your audience you are now sharing with them

When you realise this and focus on the giving to the audience, you lose your fear because your focus shifts from you to them!  And, as your audience responds to you in your position of service, your fear will diminish. You will enjoy connecting with your audience!

These public speaking are tips adapted from Seth Godin, December 2013

1 comment:

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