There is nothing that matters more than connection. Really.
Guess what? If you're not talking to yourself you are public speaking.
It's the depth of your human connection when you speak that truly changes hearts, minds, businesses, and communities. Despite what our minds tell us, it's not about how smart we are or the words we use. I loved this year's Wisdom 2.0 annual conference earlier this year because it made us all focus on The Power of Connection for three full days, and Byron Katie was a gem.
Byron's message directs us to create an inner connection, which is really what it takes to connect more deeply with those around us. Hmmm. So how do you do this? Byron Katie, who is best known for what she calls "The Work," says this, “A thought is harmless unless we believe it. It’s not our thought, but our attachment to a thought that causes suffering.” Think about how easy it is to get attached to thoughts like, "I’m not good enough...My mind will go blank when I try and public speak...I’m not a public speaker...I’m going to blow it...I don’t want to speak...I hate being in front."
At times, we all do it, but attachment to these kinds of thoughts creates a ripple effect throughout our nervous system, which produces all sorts of sensations like sweat, trembling, blanking-out, rapid heartbeat, etc.
When you let go of these kinds of negative beliefs about yourself or worry about those you need to speak to, you free yourself to become present. It’s only in the present moment that you can connect with others, tap into your genius, and make a difference with your voice.
So when the stakes are high and you’ve got a public speaking opportunity - even if it is online - remember this: “Where you put your attention (your thoughts) is what amplifies.”
What if instead of focusing on what freaks you out, choose to acknowledge your virtues instead. Look to virtues like honesty, dedication, kindness, authenticity, loving, caring, motivated, inspired.
Amplify them by closing your eyes, breathing deeply, and feeling your special virtues inside your body.
You can also take just a few minutes and journal about one virtue that you identify with. This will quickly connect you to your source of power and peace and bring down stress hormones like adrenalin and cortisol. Byron Katie has a practical worksheet you can get here to help transform how you respond to negative self-talk or beliefs. You can download it here.
This simple shift in perspective will change how you show up and influence others - every time! Becoming a great public speaker is an inside job and has everything to do with how you perceive and acknowledge yourself. Here's to you looking for what is already great about you so that you can share your message with the world...