Just got a message from a client I worked with this past summer. When she first came in, she was terrified at the thought of speaking in front of her class. After a few sessions, and with the help of hypnosis CD recordings made during those sessions, this was the result:
“I just wanted to let you know that my presentation back in August went really well. I didn’t look nervous at all, although I was but that is normal. Some people said that I was one of the best speakers in the class. After that I had another presentation, and it also went well.
Thank you very much for all your help.”
I want to draw your attention to one important phrase she wrote: “although I was but that is normal.” This is really so beautiful, because it is absolutely natural to have some feelings of excitement when speaking publicly.
Typically, only seasoned veterans with years of experience feel completely comfortable when doing so. At least, that’s been my experience. After years of doing improv comedy, I felt as comfortable on stage as I did in my own living room. Same thing goes with being in a classroom environment, in front of a TV camera, or anywhere else.
What’s important in the beginning, at least when you’ve had experiences speaking that are so uncomfortable and tense, is that you acknowledge those feelings and move forward confidently. Usually, the other people in the room can’t tell you’re a bit nervous on the inside… even if you have a few butterflies.
For this client of mine, her experience will continue to improve with the more opportunities she has to speak. The best part is that she now knows she can do it, and that she can do it well. How pleasant it will be for her when those feelings dissolve completely… and she can really start having fun.
It’s a blast to feel comfortable in front of an audience… very empowering. I think it’s something everyone should experience at least a few times, and I’m happy to help others like her get on the path to that destination.