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The Common Public Speaking Myths I HATE!

Common Public Speaking Myths I Hate

The Extrovert Myths

One of the myths about public speaking that makes me crazy is the myth that “successful public speakers are all extroverts.” 

That is nowhere NEAR true. It can’t even see true with a telescope. 

The second one that bugs the hell out of me is “extroverts are always more confident when speaking.” Not necessarily. 

Public speakers, outstanding ones – come in all shapes, sizes, and personalities. One of the few things we all have in common is the nerves that hit before we go on stage. If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I still get “butterflies.” But I use them as my batterie. 

Those two myths are pervasive and annoying. But they are not the one that makes me want to pull my hair out and scream. Which one is that?

The Hair-pulling and Scream-inducing Myth.

I’m not good at public speaking.” That’s the one.

And I hear it EVERY day. It’s driven by some insane idea that has become “True” and “Normal,” the idea that being good at public speaking takes a lot of work, is better if you’re an extrovert, and is rare to be good at. 

Nope. At least not those last two. Does speaking take work? No more than any other skill you want to master. Nut, you do not have to be an extrovert, and it’s not rare to be good at speaking. You see, there’s a truth that is BLINDINGLY obvious to me, and I am on a mission to make it common knowledge.

My Core Truth: Bad Public Speakers are Rare.

Most people ARE good at public speaking; they just haven’t had a chance to EXPRESS it yet. 

Why do I say that? Because to be bad at public speaking, you must be amazingly arrogant about your content and only concerned about your voice and work, not the audience. That’s what makes a bad public speaker. 

If you care about the audience and that your message makes a difference, you can’t possibly be a terrible, horrible, no-good, very bad public speaker.

Being nervous, shaky, clumsy, or awkward is just being a speaker who is inexperienced, untrained, or unpracticed. All things that can be worked on. 

What Are The Expectations You Have For Yourself?

Are you one of the people saying, “I’m not good at public speaking”?

Are you increasing your visibility? Are you taking on new public speaking roles or moving into speaking for the first time? If you’ve been moved into a new place in your life, your work, emotions, and worries come up for you. That’s probably because this is the first time you have had that stuff happening. 

Give Yourself Grace

I’ve always been a pretty theatrical person. So I was shocked when I discovered whole new areas in which I was hiding this year. That’s because my business has shifted to a new area. When I started taking direct clients, people saw my work as me. No problem, that’s the deal, right?

Suddenly, things started coming up for me that I never knew about – insecurities, fears, and worries about doing live videos, posting on socials, and being “seen.” I never expected to be nervous, sharing a lot of myself. I’ve been a speaker for about 25 years. It was a total shock. 

Ok. Why Are You Telling Me This?

My work requires that I’m upfront with people because that’s what I ask of others in our work together. So, here’s the deal. I get nervous. I worry about not being liked or doing a great job at a gig. It’s head trash. And here’s the thing… every one of my speaker friends, really experienced people, get head trash, too.

You WILL have nerves, sometimes out of the blue. You are only a “bad” speaker if you only care about your message and not the audience or your message’s impact. 

Most people ARE good at public speaking; they just haven’t had a chance to EXPRESS it yet.

What’s your head trash? What do you need to get rid of today? Give me your comments. Let me know what your stuff is.

Check Out Our Podcast

Our podcast, Ongoing Mastery: Presenting & Speaking, covers everything connected to continually improving your craft of being a public speaker, from interviews and mini-coaching sessions with guests to conversations on all things speaking with me and Kellie.
Come join us!

– Kirsten