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Public Speaking? It's not difficult...

Guest Blog

Public Speaking? It's not difficult...

Gill Donnell

Today's guest blog comes from Bev Hepting of Discover Your Voice with Bev Hepting.

Speaking is not difficult – we have been doing it for ever.

The only time humans do not have the ability to speak is when we are first born. (putting aside accidents or disabilities) the majority of humans learn how to speak by copying those around them. We learn how to form words and how to ask questions. In fact it is the fact that we learn to speak so well that then causes us the problem of not being able to do it later in life.

Children are curious, they want to know why things happen. Children are like parrots, they want to copy what other people are saying. And children drive their parents mad. So often they spend those wonderful years developing their speaking voice with adults telling them to “be quiet”, to be seen and not heard. Told that they don't know what they are talking about or don't use that tone of voice or that word or that phrase.

Is it any wonder then that we grow up with real tensions around speaking in public. Suddenly we are adults and we have to throw all those things out and learn new ways to communicate. And this is so true when it comes to speaking to grow a business or to grow your confidence. When we are asked to speak up we immediately begin to remember those words that adults told us. We don't even realise that it is happening, the brain just kindly reminds us and our mind monkeys go into overdrive and suddenly we are struck dumb.

This lack of confidence is only a fear that we are not good enough, a fear that we will somehow let people down and forget every thing we know. We will turn into bumbling idiots who cannot get the words out and look like rabbits in the headlights.

There is no proof that this will happen, no proof that you don't know what you are talking about, only this lingering fear based on things you have been told in the past. We also live in an age where computers and digital technology has taken over from speaking aloud. When I was a kid, we had to stand up in class and read from books, schools don't do that so much anymore.

Take those thoughts in your head and change the thought process to remind yourself that, Yes you do know what you are talking about. People have asked you to speak so they want to know what you have to say and you are all grown up now, so you can speak and tell people what you want them to know.

Stop feeding the mind monkeys and take your inner child kindly by the hand and give her permission to open her mouth and speak without fear.