A Vehicle for Self-Acceptance
Do you have a fear of public speaking?
And don't think I didn't come up with every excuse in the book not to follow through. I even told Ilise that I may not have time to prepare for it (which was the truth, but deep down I knew it was an excuse).
Here's a thought that helped me: When I watch a public speaker, I WANT them to be successful, I WANT them to provide me with valuable content and I WANT to like them!
To this logic, I must admit there is no reason to fear the audience. My biggest fear (and foe) is MYSELF. Here was an opportunity to choose to control my fear and become my own friend, rather than letting it control me.
I must admit that having stage experience helps, and I would recommend acting improvisation classes for everyone, regardless of profession. But there are those moments in front of an audience when I forget a word. (I have "Anomic Aphasia" otherwise known as "word amnesia.")
In those moments, I feel naked and alone I either choose to accept myself -- memory lapses and all -- or not. This opportunity was another exercise in self-acceptance. (Thank you, Ilise!)
Each time I do public speaking, it seems to get a little easier. If you are considering doing any form of public speaking, I highly recommend the CFC 5-minute presentation (which will be part of the conference again next year in San Francisco, June 22-24).
We all have our own "excuses" but really, in this day and age, the art of public speaking is essential to business growth as well as personal. Why not achieve both?