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Category Archives: Overcoming the Fear of Speaking

Can’t They See I’m Nervous?

NOTE: I celebrated my birthday over the last few days so I took the weekend off from producing a video for this week. We’ll return to the weekly video on Monday, Sept. 5, 2011.

One of the most frequent questions I’ve been asked … after “How do I deal with nerves/fear?” … is “Can’t they tell I’m nervous?” And, frankly, the answer really is “It depends.”

The answer could be yes if you display any of these tell-tales signs of nervous energy:

  • Speaking too fast
  • Blushing
  • Your hands are shaking
  • You don’t look in the audience’s direction at all
  • You have too many filler words

That said, you can do all these things and still have no one notice that you’re nervous!
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Lose the Fear of Public Speaking

July is Freedom from Fear of Public Speaking Month. Not being afraid, anxious or nervous in front of an audience is a goal for many people, but I’m not sure it is the right goal.

What does “freedom from fear of public speaking” mean to me?
First, it does not mean the absence of fear. It is only natural to feel at least a little nervous when in public speaking situations. Some will tell you that they don’t feel nervous at all … I think they’re lying, even to themselves. I think the nerves are there, but they’ve learned to sublimate and harness those anxious feelings to the point where they don’t even recognize them any more.

Freedom from the fear of speaking for me is attaining a balance or equilibrium with your natural nervousness so that it no longer stops you from accomplishing what you set out to accomplish.
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