Public speaking is like caring for an exotic sports car.
Picture an expensive, high performance automobile.
It has the potential to drive fast, with great power. Take care of it and it can consistently create a memorable experience.
Ignore it, or put low-quality fuel in, and it’s just another car – albeit an expensive one – that “coulda been great.”
High Performance Potential
Every person has the potential to be of one of those cars. Give them the best ideas, with fresh perspectives. They can use those ideas to live high-performance lives, filled with memorable experiences.
Give them low-quality messages, and you lose an opportunity to help them live those lives.
A common problem I see is presentations that are forgettable. They are filled with trite quotations, boring slides, or stories that don’t provide a new point-of-view.
Audiences today don’t want a rehash of old concepts. They certainly don’t need information-laden talks; they can get any fact on Google.
What people are looking for is perspective.
There isn’t a problem that can’t use a fresh view.
A New Twist on Retirement Planning
For example, consider the field of financial planning. Specifically, the area of retirement income planning.
For several decades, a key aspect of this subject has been how to use 401(k) and IRAs accounts to create income.
There is a major challenge to these investment plans. They cannot provide a guarantee that you will never run out of money. Investments, by their nature, are a double-edged sword. They offer the promise of higher returns, but, no guarantee that you will always have money in your account.
Almost all advisors have given the following advice for the last three decades:
You are limited to withdrawing a small percentage of your retirement account (for example, 3% per year). This gives you the best opportunity of never running out of money.
Notice that there is no mention of a guarantee in this advice.
People who reach retirement age don’t love the idea that they could run out of money.
This retirement planning strategy has been prevalent for so long that it is an accepted practice. There’s one problem:
It’s not true.
There are ways to create a guaranteed income for the rest of your life. With lower risk. And, as a bonus, you can increase your retirement income at the same time.
THAT is an example of a different perspective – a new idea on an old problem.
A Different Way To Manage Public Speaking Anxiety
Another area that I frequently speak about is public speaking anxiety and nerves. Many speech coaches are good at teaching speaking mechanics. For example:
- How to create a compelling opening
- Developing stories that keep audiences in rapt attention
- Crafting conclusions that stir people to action.
However, most coaches don’t deal with public speaking mindset.
It’s no secret that most people struggle with speaking to others. They attend Toastmasters or Dale Carnie courses. There, they learn the best techniques, strategies and tools. These are terrific resources to learn the basics and practice the craft
However, if these folks don’t address their negative public speaking thoughts, they won’t be the best speakers they can be. It’s like putting a lawn mower engine in that high-performance car. It won’t reach it’s greatest potential.
There are simple strategies you can employ to manage these negative messages. They’ll enable you to understand habitual thoughts or beliefs. They’ll give you the confidence to discuss tough topics. This will allow you to connect with your audiences at a much deeper level.
Just like with the retirement planning issue, this is a new twist on an old problem.
Speaking to others is a privilege, and a responsibility. The responsibility to offer new ways of thinking, and new ideas about old problems. And remember, everyone in front of you is like an exquisite automobile. Each has the potential to live a magnificent life and perform at the highest possible level.
Craft and deliver your unique message, and you can help them do just that.
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