Public Speaking Myths to
Clear Up Right Now
Myth #2 - The Fear Is All In
What happens to you when itís
your turn to speak in public? Do your hands shake? Does
your pulse race? Does your blood pressure rise? For most
of us the answers to these and other physical
manifestations would be a resounding ďYES!Ē
In his book, Brain Rules,
Dr. John Medina explains what happens in your body when
youíre stressed. He explains that when youíre faced with
a stressful situation, either positive or negative, a
structure in your brain called the hypothalamus reacts
to the stress and sends a signal to your adrenal glands,
which immediately dumps loads of adrenaline into your
bloodstream, triggering what is known as the fight or
When adrenaline enters your
system, it helps the fight or flight response by
boosting your heart rate and increasing your breathing
rate. This reaction allows more oxygen to course through
your body so that a lot of energy is available when
needed. Your pupils
dilate to improve your vision, and most of
the blood supply is directed to the skeletal muscles
that help you run or fight, all the while restricting
blood flow to your gut and skin by constricting blood
vessels to these areas.
This all means that the fear of
speaking isnít just in your head. It affects your entire
physical being and alters the way you present yourself
when you finally take the stage.
The fear of speaking isnít
something you can talk yourself out of. Itís something
to be acknowledged, respected and dealt with properly.
When dealt with properly, you can leverage the natural
physical results associated with the fight or flight
response into a powerful tool to help you be sensational
when you speak.
As you prepare to take the stage
at your next opportunity, remember that the fear you
feel is real. It has physical manifestations and you
must face them, acknowledge them and deal with them.
So, whatís the lesson? Never try
to talk yourself out of the fear or the anxiety. It will
only frustrate you when you take the stage and that will
make matters worse.