Seven Things that Undermine Confidence – Thing Four

Apr 2019

Focusing on Yourself rather than Others

A situation that many people fear is public speaking.   Thinking about making a presentation can evoke all kinds of angst.   You might have thoughts like “people will notice that I am nervous” or “I might forget something” or event “I might freeze up completely”.    You might wish that you could feel less nervous and be more confident.  Well, you can.

Consider this, what would a confident person do to prepare for a presentation?  Likely not spend energy worrying for one thing.  Instead, he or she might think the topic through, decide on goals for the presentation, do whatever research is necessary, make some notes and practice.   The major difference between an anxious and confident speaker is that the anxious speaker is focused on themselves (their nervousness, their fears, their potential mistakes) while a confident person is focused on the audience.  What does my audience need? How can I assist? What can I say that would be of benefit to them?  How can I make it fun and interesting?

The same thing goes for networking.  Many people experience social anxiety and dread having to tell others what they do – even trying to memorize an elevator introduction.  When you are more interested in others, rather than needing to be seen as interesting, you can relax into asking others about their lives, their challenges and their dreams.

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