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Dislodging the Public Speaking Demon

Dislodging the Public Speaking Demon

by Guest contributor Richard Smith on August 9, 2013

“The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public” ~ George Jessel

 

It is a common fear. We all recognise the symptoms – sweaty palms, loss of appetite, restlessness, dry mouth, shortness of breath, a tight throat, nausea, dread…

Anxiety about public speaking impacts most of us at some point in our lives

To a large number of people it can become a barrier in their careers. The medical term is Glossophobia, and it’s a big one. Fear of public speaking routinely comes top in the list of the biggest phobias worldwide.

To those scheduled to speak, the discomfort emerges early

Thinking about standing in front of the audience raises anxiety, which becomes a demon on our backs.

A conscious effort not to think about public speaking can work for short spells, but this is an avoidance tactic and soon the demon reminds us of his presence, larger and fiercer than before.

What is the source of the phobia of public speaking?

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Guest contributor Richard Smith

Richard Smith is a leader in the environmental industry, consulting with the University of Hertfordshire. His role includes consulting, management training and executive coaching. He is a believer in development and learning, especially in relational settings. The day we stop learning is our last on Earth, until then we never know the limits of how much we can grow.

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Coaching and consulting:  Corporate “C” words?

Coaching and consulting: Corporate “C” words?

by Moyra Mackie on July 8, 2013

Have you or your company ever used management consultants?

Every year in the US alone, more than $396bn is spent  on management and IT consulting, so the chances are there is a consultant somewhere near you, right now.

Spending on consultants is now back to pre-credit crunch levels, yet the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business is only one of many to point out that:

“disenchantment with the value delivered by consultants has grown.”

So companies are spending a fortune on consultants with unclear ROI

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Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie helps leaders and teams to work with courage, compassion and creativity. She is an executive coach and consultant and the founder of Mackie Consulting.

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Ten tips for hands free presentations

Ten tips for hands free presentations

by Moyra Mackie on May 17, 2013

I’ve lost count of the number of clients who come to me for presentation skills coaching who ask:

“What am I supposed to do with my hands? I feel so awkward.”

If you’re going to be a great presenter you need to stop worrying about what you do with your hands.  You’re not directing traffic or carrying out brain surgery.  You’re talking to people.

When you talk to people in the office, at home, in a bar, do you worry about your body language?  I’m guessing that for most of us, outside of a first date or important interview, the answer to that question will be “no”.

And why don’t we worry?

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Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie helps leaders and teams to work with courage, compassion and creativity. She is an executive coach and consultant and the founder of Mackie Consulting.

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Do you feel listened to?

What’s more, are YOU a good listener?

Studies show adults remember between 25 and 50 per cent of what they hear. So when you talk to your boss, colleagues, customers or spouse, they’re paying attention to less than half of the conversation.

Some of you – especially those who have been married for some time – may not be at all surprised by this.

Listening is more than just hearing

Active listening is a conscious effort to understand messages that are only partly about the words being said. As Peter Senge says:

“To listen fully means to pay close attention to what is being said beneath the words. You listen not only to the ‘music,’ but to the essence of the person speaking. You listen not only for what someone knows, but for what he or she is.
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Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie

Moyra Mackie helps leaders and teams to work with courage, compassion and creativity. She is an executive coach and consultant and the founder of Mackie Consulting.

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