Are you worried about disappointing people when you speak in public?
Perhaps, disappointing your boss?
Disappointing your audience?
Sometimes, when you are afraid of public speaking or even just speaking UP for yourself, there is more to that fear than meets the eye.
If you are afraid of judgement, letting people down, or worse, letting yourself down… then this video is for you…
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FULL VIDEO TRANSCRIPT
A fear of disappointing people can be one of the biggest factors that robs you of success in life. If you hold your tongue, don’t say what you really feel, and avoid speaking your truth, then you are probably afraid of what other people might say, or think and use that as an excuse to stay quiet. This pattern of behavior is really just a habit that you’ve gotten yourself into and it will absolutely stop you from being more successful. So, let’s look at ways you can break this pattern so you can start communicating from a place of safety and confidence instead of a place of fear.
TIP #1: Your Origin Story .
When we really start to dig deep and find the root cause to this pattern, you might find the very first time that you held your tongue was a long time ago and then you will probably find there are dozens of other situations in your childhood where you reacted in the same way to deal with a certain type of situation. In this case, we are talking about speaking up for yourself. So, let me share with you an example that might be relevant to you. When I was in third grade, I was about 7 years old and the shyest kid you would ever meet. I hardly said boo in class, usually sat up at the back and minded my own business. Pretty much already socially anxious. Then one day, a loud annoying kid took the seat next to me in class. She kept talking and asking me questions when I was trying to listen to the teacher. When I finally answered one of her questions just to get her to be quiet, the teacher sprung me for talking out of turn and promptly sent me to the principal’s office where I got the cane. I didn’t tell the teacher it wasn’t me causing the disturbance. I didn’t tell the principle what really happened. I didn’t even tell my parents that day. I Iied. I took the blame for something that I didn’t do. I shut my mouth out of fear of getting into more trouble by arguing or speaking up because that is what I had already learned. The more you argue or speak up for yourself, the more you get into trouble, the more you create a scene, the more you disappoint people. It was an avoidance strategy that I adopted as a child in order to keep the peace and not have to deal with angry people that were likely to create a scene!
When you look back at the first instances of these experiences in life, you can find out when and where you adopted these habits and you can start to understand yourself a little better. After all – this is just another habit. A pattern that we need to break.
Now that you have some understanding of WHY you adopted that particular strategy, we can start looking at better ways of dealing with it.
TIP #2: The 2 R Words: Breaking the Old and Building the New
Now that we know where the habit or pattern came from, to be afraid to speak up, let’s look at how you can change that. The first thing we need to do is stop those fear chemicals from kicking in so you can calm that trigger down the second it rears its ugly head.
The trigger is not actually the problem.
We all have triggers. It’s HOW you react to your triggers that count. The first step is KNOWING what triggers you and HOW you have commonly reacted in the past. For example, when I was at my worst, I went completely the opposite way to when I was a little girl. In my 20’s, instead of holding my tongue, I would lash out in anger and frustration and get into even MORE trouble than I needed to. This, of course, was also NOT a great strategy. So, when I had matured a little more and immersed myself into the world of personal development, I started being able to identify WHAT situations and behaviors triggered me. I learned a different way. Instead of REACTING, with no conscious thought, I used this strategy instead: when I felt the trigger coming up, I would stop. Breathe. Leave a pause. And then respond from a more calm and sensible place.
The most important tool to use in effective and calm communication is to train yourself to RESPOND instead of REACT. React is what a wild untamed animal does. A conscious response is what only HUMANS are capable of.
TIP #3: Communication Strategies for Success
Now that you have learned how to calm down your triggers, it’s time to start to speak up and practice making some noise. Once you feel you have more control over your emotions, you can start to place yourself in situations where you can test your new skill set. A few tangible ways you can do this at work or at home to improve your life and success is with the following exercise:
- Start practicing building confidence in yourself and your skill set by talking positively about yourself. A great place to start is with the google initiative called “I am remarkable!” This is like stating your worth out loud to the world. First make a list of all the things that make you unique, that make you YOU, like physical attributes, your values, your personality traits. All good things of course. An example of this is: I am a remarkable person because I am a good person. I am kind. I am approachable. I am friendly. I am loving. etc etc. Good attributes only, remember.
- Then do the same exercise again using your professional skills instead: I am remarkable professionally because I am a good performer. I am a great teacher. I am really good at my job. I am passionate about what I do… And so on.
The more you practice these out loud, the better you get.
In some circles, they may call this tooting your own horn, which some people frown upon. But sometimes we NEED to toot our own horn, especially if we had a life time of other people dragging us down and treating us badly. It’s time for YOU to become your own best friend. Your best cheer leader. Your biggest fan. YOU DESERVE IT.
Do not forget: Speak up. Speak out. Be ready to be heard because remember: YOUR VOICE MATTERS.