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You're going to do it. You finally decided to take the plunge and learn how to become a public speaking maestro. You sign up for the much lauded public speaking guru's training... and you leave with a checklist of do's and don'ts. All is good yes? Not necessarily.
If you're going to invest in your personal development in tough times, you might well want it to last longer than the day spent out of the office. Yet so much public speaking training focuses on teaching the wrong things that simply don't work.
Forbes put out this article encouraging people not to 'waste their money' on public speaking training. If public speaking training is only as advanced as 'put this arm here,' 'do that with your feet' and 'say this line so that the crowd will think you're smart', then I resoundingly agree.
Yet once you've left the training room, finished reading the article, or closed the eCourse, what are you left with? A seed that has been planted, that will some day flourish into a fruitful foray in public speaking prowess? Probably not. Most likely you've been left with 6 Rules and 9 Terrifying Mistakes that you'll forget before you reach your front door.
By trying to adjust behaviors on a surface level (altering gestures, eye contact, vocal delivery, etc) public speaking trainers often neglect the cause of these behaviors.
Most of us know how we should behave when we speak in public, but the problem comes when we don't do it. We don't do it because we lack Awareness of our behaviors under pressure. We freeze and forget every one of the 6 rules and 9 Terrifying mistakes that we just spent big bucks learning.
Here's what to do instead: Take a peek inward. I know, scary stuff. We compare our insides to everything outside. I have to be perfect, act perfect, look perfect, speak… perfectly. It’s truly an insurmountable mountain of malarkey we pile upon ourselves. What’s wrong with showing up less than perfect? What’s the worst thing that could happen? That people will know you’re human? That you have bad days too? Maybe, just maybe, that will make others relate to you. Do you like people who paint on a mask? Then why should it be any different for those around YOU?
By focusing on your QUALITIES (not just behaviors) you can allow the real you to blossom when you speak. Read more about how to let your wonderful qualities shine through!
When you're nervous about public speaking, the last thing you want is to remember a whole load of things you "should" and "shouldn't" be doing on stage, so how come this is the focus of so much speaking training? Better focus on being Authentic and then your natural, calm self expression will rise to the surface.
Here's what to do instead:
In the end, being a brilliant public speaker isn’t about adding things to you as a person, it’s not about learning new individual behaviours, or copying someone else. Truth is more important and more powerful than any pretence.
If you really want to be an inspiring public speaker, you need to strip all the 'should's and 'shouldn't's away. Read on...
If you think about the types of public speakers who have inspired you most, are they the 'technically accurate' ones, or the ones with passion, life and a unique attitude?
Public speaking training which helps you fit into the box is counterproductive. If you want your message to stick in the minds of your audience, you need to be comfortable with sticking out. Sticking out might mean being funny, being wild, being sensual, being vulnerable, or any other characteristic.
The important thing is not to become someone else's idea of a good public speaker - it's to be Fearlessly You.
Here's what to do instead: Rather than pushing away your nerves and becoming a robot speaker who’s technically “very good” and seems “very confident”, I’d like to show you how to become a Fearless speaker, who uses your nervous energy for good, rather than pushing it away. Read all about the ingredients of confident public speaking HERE.
It's all about having a "Qualities Centric" approach to public speaking, rather than a "Behavior Centric" approach. It's a shift from the masculine "I can fix you from the outside" model, to one that is more integrated, more feminine and comes from within. The Qualities Centric approach invites you to ask "What would it take for me to be fully myself?" and sees the power that results.
Public speaking training that develops a speaker's qualities over time goes deeper and continues to work over time- long after the training has finished. This is the seed that will grow over time into a fruitful bounty of self awareness and public speaking power. And better still, this kind of public speaking training feels intuitively right, because it is allowing boxed in parts of the psyche to surface and flower.
This is how development happens in most circumstances, an internalized understanding of information then becomes integrated into behavior.
After watching hundreds of inspiring speakers (and a few not-so-inspiring ones too) I learned that there were six main qualities that help a speaker to truly impact their audience. This is what my book “How to be Brilliant at Public Speaking” (Pearson) explains in detail. Here at Ginger we fully believe that you already have all the qualities to become a truly powerful and inspiring speaker, you just need an environment in which to nurture them.
To help you harness the TED style power for your own public speaking, we have a wonderful one day event coming up in London on November 30th! If you want to learn exactly how to impact your audience with power and authenticity - this one day highly specialized course is tailor made just for you. Hurry to claim the last few spots!
Courses relevant to you:
Presentation Training and Skills
Talk Writing and Training
TED Talk presentation Skills
This showcase of inspiring female speakers is part of Ginger's work with game changing leaders.Discover More
Learn the art of speaking with power and confidence that will allow you to wow your audience, in our free master class video series from Ginger's founder Sarah Lloyd-Hughes.Begin Part 1 Now!