Take a good look at the picture above. Look at it for several seconds.
What do you see?
Most people see a white triangle. It’s resting upon a black-lined triangle and three circles.
The reality is there isn’t a white triangle in the illustration. There are three v-shaped lines and three ‘Pac-Man’ discs.
This illustration is a Kanizsa Triangle. Created in the 1950s, it helps show how the brain perceives objects and colors in everyday life. It also demonstrates that we don’t always see what what’s really there.
Research has determined that humans have visual ‘blind spots.’
Our eyes don’t see everything in our field of vision. Our brains have developed the ability to fill in the missing pieces and create false images. This is why we ‘see’ the white triangle that isn’t there.
It occurs to me that audiences often have ‘blind spots’ about the topics we speak about. One of the roles of speakers is to help audiences see the world in a different light.
For 20 years, I was a Certified Financial Planner. We often invested time with clients to show the reality of financial products. For example, how the stock market functions, or how life insurance products work.
Far too often, they had incorrect assumptions about these financial tools. These beliefs caused them to make poor financial decisions. Until we clarified these, our clients couldn’t make good decisions that they felt good about.
As a speech coach, one of my first jobs is to work with people on their fear or anxiety about public speaking. These feelings are real for many, but are often based on false premises. People may feel that great speakers are born that way, or that audiences want them to fail. Neither of these is true, but, until I help them under this, the rest of my coaching will be less effective.
As you prepare your next presentation, do this:
Write out a list of common misconceptions that may be blinding your audience. If they are stuck on these beliefs, you won’t be able to connect with them at a deep level and see the benefit of your message.
Then create a list of ‘truths’ to counter those beliefs. These will help them see the picture as it really is.
When you change audience perceptions, you’ll open their minds to seeing your topic in a new light. You’ll enhance the chances of leaving a lasting impression on them.
Want to ‘Become a Speaker Everyone Wants to Hear? Join me for a no-cost, no-obligation webinar this Thursday at noon (EST). Discover three of the most common speaking myths that hold speakers back. You’ll also learn the next steps you can take to become a speaker who Stands Out every time you speak.
To register, click here.