Big fear vs little fear when public speaking

No fear is the worst possible thing we can have when public speaking.

No fear means we don’t see the consequences of giving a bad presentation or speech. If we believe nothing can go wrong, then we also start to believe that we need less rehearsal, less effort and less energy when we’re speaking. No fear means gung-ho speaking. We rush, lose sight of the value of our speech, increase the likelihood of mistakes and as a result, the value we give to our audience decreases.

Big fear when speaking is pretty bad too. Big fear means stun gun style paralysis, forgotten words, mumbling and shaking. Big fear is the fear that stops us totally from speaking. Big fear is as bad as no fear, because both ruin our message.

The best fear is little fear.

Just enough to keep us on our toes, to make us realise the value of what we’re about to do when we stand up and speak and to give us that little bit of adrenaline that shows our audience we really care about what it is we have to say.

Embrace little fear. It motivates us all to better speaking.

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Rich Watts is the UK Business Speaker of the Year and a past JCI National Public Speaking champion. He setup and now runs Rich Public Speaking providing presentation skills and public speaking training.

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