Many executives and entrepreneurs– even highly skilled– fear public speaking, delivering that critical presentation, especially to a big crowd or in a high stakes situation. What do peak performers do to ensure even more success?
I have been thinking about this a lot as I am really ramping up my corporate speaking these days, with upcoming presentations for Merrill Lynch and also, Bank of America. I have spoken to over 2,000 colleagues in my career, but I am always improving.
1. Know the presentation cold. This goes without saying.
2. Try this surprising tip from an outstanding African American 20- year old, America’s first National Youth Poet Laureate, Amanda Gorman, who not only speaks publicly (often), but also, has overcome a speech impediment. Her suggestion? A meaningful secret prop plus a powerful saying.
The prop, which she wears, is a “literary talisman,” in the form of a special necklace from her grandmother. When nervous before performing, she holds it in her hands, which gives her a sense that she has powerful backup.
Secondly, she floods her soul and spirit with power by saying the following mantra: “I am the daughter of black writers who are descended from freedom fighters who broke their chains and changed the world. They call me.”
This gives me the chills to even read it!
Amanda says, “100 percent of the time, after saying that, I am ready to go.”
Why does this combo work and why should you consider giving your own version a try? Because it CREATES INSTANT POWER– energy, focus and power amassing from the belief that one is here for a much bigger reason, that your impact is an important extension of your people who came before you, and that now it is YOUR time– i.e. the WHY is called out.
That “why” drives well-being in this context. It’s a game-changer in the sense that it transforms a mere speaking engagement into a life-purpose-fulfilling moment.
I am 100% trying this next week!
Quote I love: “Your heart is the size of an ocean. Go find yourself in its hidden depths.” – Rumi
Have a wonderful Wednesday, everyone!