You Don't Fear Public Speaking

Even if the very thought of public speaking seems to fill you with fear, I have some great news for you.

You are not afraid of public speaking.

How do I know this for sure? Easy. There is nothing to be afraid of.

Or to put it more clearly. There is nothing (no thing) that can cause you to be afraid.

This is a really important point and one that you will find, as I did, hugely liberating and very useful as you approach challenging situations of all sorts - including of course, public speaking. Because it's so important let's prove it to your satisfaction with a simple example.

Imagine you're sitting quite comfortably and anonymously in an audience of 800 people when suddenly to your horror the speaker makes his way off the stage into the crowd looking for a volunteer to come up the front and say something. The cold shiver up the spine turns to borderline panic attack as he walks directly towards your row. Oh my god he's smiling at me. Why me? You do your best to avert your eyes and disappear from sight but he's relentless and now he's standing right alongside your row saying "Could you please come up. Yes you." You consider faking a serious leg (or possibly brain) injury when you realise ... he was meaning the person sitting next to you! Your relief is palpable as you smile and wish the poor victim well as they shuffle, terrified up on stage.

The point worth learning from this story is that you weren't afraid of being asked to speak up on stage. How could you be afraid of something that didn't happen? It's impossible. The invitation wasn't for you, it was for your next door neighbour, and yet you were terrified.

Look at it logically. If being asked to speak in front of 800 caused you to be afraid then it would always work with every person. But clearly it doesn’t. If you asked me to speak in front of 800 people I might be delighted and in any crowd I wouldn't be the only one. Unfortunately that alone disproves the notion that the invitation to speak caused you to be afraid. What if you were deaf and your hearing aid batteries failed just as the speaker issued the invitation, so you are blissfully unaware of it? Again the invitation has been issued but you are not afraid this time because you never heard it.

Now extend this to all events that happen. Could it be that none of them can cause you to be afraid? Of course that's true isn't it?

For you to be afraid something else must be added to the event by you. The event can't do it alone can it?

No. You have to add a thought, or more likely many thoughts in quick succession, and hey presto the trick is done - you are now a quivering mouse-like creature.

A wise man once told me that "there is nothing that can cause fear, but the fearful person is afraid of everything'. And he really meant everything.

In that one line lays the secret to getting past this, or any other anxiety.

I want you to consider that it's not the 'thing' that you're afraid of that needs to go - it's the fearful person.

Getting rid of the fearful person does not mean doing yourself any harm by the way! In fact the exact opposite. When you truly realise that literally nothing can make you afraid - I'd say you'll do yourself a whole lot of good.

Why don't you explore some more of the pages under Fear Of Speaking to deepen your understanding further?

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