How Fears Of Public Speaking Manifest (and what we can do about it)
Having a fear of public speaking is incredibly common. Some studies have even found that up to a quarter of all people are more scared of speaking in front of an audience than they are of death.
Public speaking, however, can be an effective way to share a message with many people. Whether you want to inspire others, grow your business or simply share your story with the world, there are going to be times when speaking in public is the best option.
So how do you overcome a fear of public speaking? There are many different strategies and coaching options to help you become more confident, open and engaging as a public speaker, which means exploring different sides to the fear is a great place to start. It helps you get to the very core of what is holding you back.
One of the interesting insights I’ve gained from working with Dr Gary Wohlman is that fear, itself, is both an impersonal and a personal thing. While we might share a fear of something, such as public speaking, the specifics of that fear could be very different. For example, one person might be scared of coming across as boring, while another person is afraid of appearing silly.
The interesting thing about this outcome-based fear is that it can often manifest into a reality. Worrying too much about being boring could mean the person sticks to his or her notes, pausing to make eye contact only at scheduled times. A fear of being silly could mean someone freezes up if they make a mistake and, in turn, cause uncomfortable laughter.
Dr Gary’s approach to these fear-driven outcomes is to explore them in a safe environment. As one of his online videos demonstrates in the case of someone being scared of seeming silly, exploring the extremes of this anxiety frees the speaker from that fear and helps them connect and present from an authentic, honest place within themselves.
Connecting with and exploring fears of public speaking are just one element of the work Dr Gary does in this arena. Through his online resources, book, live workshops (link to Facebook event: and private sessions, Dr Gary helps people connect with and explore communication on a multi-dimensional level. That means using our voices, bodies and minds to communicate in a clear and fulfilling way, whether it is on a stage, in a boardroom or at the dinner table.
From my own work with Dr Gary, I believe this approach is rewarding for both professional and personal goals. Because when we integrate our whole self into our communication, we invite ourselves to live a whole life as well.
~ written by Amy Bradney-George, recent client and advocate of this work