By: Jacques Waisvisz


Have you attended meetings where you wanted and were expected
to contribute and simply did not dare to get up and be heard?
Have you toyed with the idea of giving workshops to increase your
business, but shied away because you were too scared to get up
in front of an audience?

Why is it that so many us, who have worthwhile contributions to
make, avoid getting up in front of a group of people, to put our
thoughts into words? Why is it that small vocal minorities often
seem to get their way? Why is it that Toastmasters International
attracts over 170,000 members every year?
Because many people are afraid to address an audience.

A U.S. publication, "The Book of Lists" reports that
the greatest fear of people in North America is to get up in front
of a group of people to make a presentation. You are not alone!

And what do most of us do to overcome this fear? We simply decline
invitations to speak. In other words, we throw away opportunities
for career advancement or increased business. We choose to remain
in our comfort zone.

If we do accept to speak to an audience, we have a tendency to hide behind electronic wizardry rather than making our speech a promotional platform for ourselves and we fervently hope that the audience does not notice our shaking knees, trembling hands and quivering voice.

Real communication takes place when one human being reaches out
to others by using his or her own natural wizardry.

All the email,
faxes and multi-media equipment in the world will not be able
to replace the human voice, body language or emotion in communication.

Presentation skills are within all of us but we have often developed
a negative attitude towards speaking in public. Many psychologists
and therapists tend to agree that this phobia about public speaking
might have developed as a learned negative behavior during our
school years.

Kindergarten. Show and Tell. I bet you can recall
several of your little class mates who were called upon by the
teacher to do their "show and tell" in front of the
class and who left their mark...on the floor, right in front of
the whole class. That's how scared they were!

Elementary School. Presentations in front of the
class. This was the period when we had crushes, and the subject
of our admiration was snickering at our ineptness!

High School. How did the teacher always know the
kid who had not prepared his or her homework? Another humiliation
in front of our peers!

Is it any wonder that we grow up with this negative attitude about
getting up in front of a group to make a presentation? Of course
not! It is the result of negative conditioning. Since one of the
greatest human motivations is the avoidance of pain, we have learned
that speaking in front of a group is to be avoided at all costs,
because it creates nothing but pain and embarrassment.

But there is hope, negative attitudes can be unlearned. We can
learn effective ways to control this fear and to use our voice,
body language and emotion to make successful presentations and
deliver workshops that create results. Here are a few tips:

Read the complete article that provides various solutions to overcome this FEAR of speaking in front of a groupFree Articles, in our semi-monthly ezine.
Visit the Speaker's Coach Website at:

Life Fear and Attitude

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