PAUSE - the silent opportunity of connecting with your audience
December 1, 2014
Women's March to Freedom
March 8, 2017
Do you dare reveal yourself through your presentations?
April 1, 2014
The Zen Master Shunryu Suzuki says - "To express yourself as you are is the most important thing" - and why is that? Well, Oscar Wilde would say because "Everyone else is taken up"! And while we may laugh and find his wit amusing, the truth is that the most powerful state you can ever inhabit is YOU!
Yet isn’t it interesting how so many of us, especially as women, will do anything to hide ourselves in that public presentation arena. And why? Perhaps because we lack the confidence to stand in our own authenticity; because we compare ourselves with that someone else who appears more experienced, more confident, more intelligent, more witty, and more credible than us. So disappearing behind that PowerPoint; behind that quiet, soft voice; or that written script may seem to be a way out. While others of us will overcompensate and assume some kind of ‘presenter role’ or take on traits of people who are nothing like us because we think that will impress our audience - the truth is that being anything other than YOU will always be sniffed out and detected a mile off as unreal!
The fascinating thing is that most dynamic presenters are dynamic because they believe in themselves and underneath all the passion, confidence and skilfulness lies their true nature. Isn’t this true nature what we are instinctively drawn to? Think about it! The person that can really be themselves, reach out to us and speak to us as if they have always known us is very compelling and powerful. The person that leaves their ego at the door and walks into the room with the intention of just connecting with us sends out a very clear signal that they are enough!
What authenticity does is to draw your audience to your message because you become the message. One has only to think of iconic leaders and speakers such as Martin Luther King to know that his name is synonymous with authenticity and his revolutionary message of freedom.
Now, no one is suggesting you have to stand before a nation of people to be memorable and real ... because you don’t! It is enough that you, in your own way with your passions, connections and authentic sharing, leave that bold, dynamic, unique and memorable impression with your audience.
After all, there may be many people who do what you do as a profession and deliver similar kinds of information but no one will communicate it in quite the same way as you do. This is because you are unique and it is your voice, your story, your experience lived authentically in each moment that will be remembered by your audience in a powerful, bold, captivating and influential way.
So next time you have to present your message, be bold, be real and connect with the people you are speaking to. You will find that it is far more relaxing and enjoyable and your audience will have the wonderful opportunity of getting to know you through your message.