Overcoming the Fear of Public Speaking

It is a common question; “How can get rid of my fear of speaking in front of people?”

In a word, you need to love them! I’m not talking about a romantic affection. I’m talking about a shift of focus to them, their needs, and not yourself. The fear and nervousness associated with public speaking comes from one place; your concern and worry about how you are coming across, about you being embarrassed, about you being boring, stupid, irritating, fumbled, jumbled, silly…. And hundreds of other irrelevant thoughts all about yourself.

The truth is that the audience is not concerned about you. They are concerned about themselves and their needs. If you focus on them and not yourself, your anxiety and fear will diminish. Fear is the opposite of love. Fear is self-centered, and love is centered on others and their wellbeing. Fear is protective and closed, and love is vulnerable and open.

If your intention is to serve the audience and take care of them, then you will do your best to prepare and bring what is best for them. You will strive to know your audience and then bring them what will meet their needs. Again, it is not about you, it is all about them.

A man was dying of thirst in the desert and losing consciousness. He looked up and saw an ugly woman in a hideous print dress with a rusty bucket – filled with water. The man only cared about one thing, and one thing only…..the water. He cared less about the women, her appearance, and the condition of the bucket. It is about what you have to give. It is not about you. You, my friend, are just a hose. It is the message that you have that really matters. Relax and quit taking yourself so seriously. You are not really that important. What you are delivering can potentially do amazing things. So smile, and show up, relax and enjoy being a hose that brings cold water to thirsty people.

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