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Falling in LOVE with Public Speaking – By Annik Rau

Getting really good at public speaking and presenting is not something that happens over night. In fact it took me many years to get over the ‘stuff’ going on in my head and even now the ‘monsters’ created in my imagination come back as soon as I am in front of a new audience testing out new material asking me: ‘Why on earth should they listen to you?’. If you want a quick fix, stop reading this. Nerves will be with you as long as you live so you have to start accepting and embracing them. Before diving into any speaker training here are THREE things you can start doing on a daily basis to shape your awareness around what’s going on in your head.

1. BREATHE with full awareness and deeply. Bla bla, I know everyone says this BUT mindful breathing slows down your brainwaves and brings you back from your head into your body, noticing the sensations there. People overthinking everything tend to breathe not deeply enough.

2. QUIT people-pleasing, it’s exhausting. Always remember that nobody is perfect but your authenticity will go a long way, even if on occasions people don’t agree with you – they will respect you for being the real you. Today, there are 7.3 billion people on this planet and there is no way you will ever be loved by EVERYONE. In every audience you speak to there surely will be at least 1 or 2 people thinking ‘who’s this crazy person on stage’ and that’s fine.

3. IF the nerves kick-in big time go back to POINT 1. Check-in with your body. How stressed are you? Strong nerves will massively trigger the flow of adrenaline and over-exaggerate all feelings and thougths you have. Pay attention to the ‘monsters’ you create in your imagination. We often believe the crazy things our mind is telling us. Go back to thinking about the bigger picture. Will that one ‘screwed-up’ presentation still matter 6 months down the line?

I know, that might all sound simple theoretically BUT as soon as you are about to step into the spotlight all breathing & grounding is forgotten. PRACTISE! Get yourself on stage and in uncomfortable situations as often as you can and over time your mind & body will be getting used to the nerves thinking: ‘Here we go again. Let’s have some fun with the perceived danger.’

Annik Rau is the Founder of Pony Express Speaker Training and she will be the guest speaker at I Am Networking’s event on 24 February. Click here to find out more and to sign up. You can find out more about Annik and Pony Express on her website here.


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