The Fear of Public Speaking and What It Really Boiled Down To

Self-love and self-approval instead of self-judgment. (Follow the link to find tools to get you there!)- www.theorganicsister.comI realized recently that I don’t get scared speaking anymore. Not when I’m interviewing someone big or important, nor when I’m teaching my essential oil workshops.

I used to get out of my mind scared: butterflies, tightness, heart racing, the constant urge to pee my pants (no joke), and crazy thoughts of all kind of madness that could ensue, which usually involved images of people with pitchforks.

But without all those emotions and thoughts getting in the way I’ve found I actually have a strength and passion for teaching, presenting, and speaking. (If you had asked me that five years ago I would swallowed my tongue just thinking about it.)

I’ve spoken to some pretty amazing people in my life, people I admire or had a mild crush on – Steven Tyler (!!), Ricki Lake, Dr. Peter Gray – all with various amounts of nerves and confidence leading up to the moment. Interestingly enough, in all those situations I was never nervous IN the situation, always before when I was still in my own head about it (or after when I climbed back in there).

Part of this shift just came down to doing the work to no longer see myself as “not good enough” and holding others as “better than me”. It doesn’t matter who I’m talking to, I feel at ease because I know I’m talking to a reflection of myself, another beautiful soul, a manifestation of something wonderful. The same as me, each person.

I assume good intent now, where before I assumed judgment preluding rejection. I now assume I’m talking to a friend, because truly, beneath it all, I am.

I wrote this on Facebook the other day:

It’s a big fucking Aha moment to realize that whether people love and approve of you actually comes down to a) whether they love and approve of themselves, and b) whether YOU love and approve of YOURSELF.

If you haven’t experienced that shift in perspective, try it on for size. Start loving yourself, start approving of what you do (and/or doing what you actually approve of), start telling the BS fear-mongering stories in your mind that you are, indeed, quite good enough and quite deserving. Start paying more attention to your thoughts than what you perceive to be someone else’s.

Watch how all your relationships change, starting with the one you have with yourself.

And I think that pretty much sums it up. When I chose to love and approve of myself, my relationship with myself and what I loved and did obviously changed. But it also gave way to so much more ease and fun to be discovered in my relationships with others.

Try it on for size:

Take a pause from caring about what the drama is saying (whether it’s the drama in our minds or the drama in our lives). Start focusing more on how well you’re loving and accepting yourself in each (easy or challenging) moment. Watch how it gradually changes every relationship you have.

My tools to do this consisted of the same ones I’m always harping on ;), the ones I love and share freely:

  • Essential oils that impact emotions, triggers and stress: Namely for me, it was bergamot for self-love and wild orange to release patterns of scarcity (fear of not enough-ness).
  • Digging Deep and the tools talked about within to overcome core beliefs, resistance, and fears. (This one can actually help you find the oils that will support you too by showing you those underlying needs/triggers.)

It boils down to this: Find your triggers. Find your tools. Use them consistently. Constantly. Watch your life evolve.

I can add Headline Speaker to my resume. Just sayin.

This is one of those posts where I do a little *happydance* and celebrate how I totally rocked my first speaking gig.

I was pretty over the moon just to have an Events page. (I have an Events page!) But to actually BE AT the event! Well, that actually made me a little nauseous.

The event was the Mindful Spirit Expo in Jackson, MS this past weekend and I had not one but TWO talks AND a booth!

Justin was also there, as one half of Oddball Juggling, teaching adults (and a few kids) the benefits of juggling (like using it as a meditation, a healthy outlet for emotions, a preventative tool for neurological disorders) and how to juggle.

We shared a booth, which meant he drew a lot of people to us, what with his balls flying through the air.

I have a booth! And I rocked my talk too! And I've met the most incredible soulful people! <3

Justin in his element inspiring juggling at the expo

And then I SPOKE! I actually got up in front of a crowd and poured my heart and soul out. I talked about my Digging Deep process the first day, and then about Organic Parenting the second.

I had so many nerves beforehand that I literally wanted to run away.

Yes, you may see me as happy and confident but that’s only after a fair deal of internal work to release the old stories that run through my head.

(They tend to say things like “WTF!” and “This was a bad idea” and “You’re going to the Bible belt to talk at a mind-body-spirit expo?! You’re going to be lynched!” That last one was calmed when I realized I was one of the least “woo-woo” there – still woo-woo mind you, but the least. 😉 )

The last time I was on stage was hula hooping almost two years ago and even that was nerve-wracking for me. Leading up to this event, all I could think about was how nervous I get in front of crowds. Hula hooping in front of a group of awesome families sounds so easy and it still tore me up.

This was freaking me out.

But there is a big difference between almost two years ago and now. Now I have tools to qualm those old stories and move me back into that confidence and excitement. So I used them:

  • Plenty of Digging Deep on those stories, of course
  • EFT to help release the nerves
  • Connecting with my own coach for a reminder session (As in a reminder of what is true)
  • Stillness, meditation (mine and Jenn’s new one*), surrender, Trust, prayer
  • Music – Oddly enough this Gotye song was the only one my head wanted to hear, so I popped in my earphones and danced through the lobby until it was time to speak. Yes, I did.

And then I stood up, took a deep breath, closed my eyes and let myself speak on the topics that have changed my life, the tools I’ve found and created to heal my spirit and my family, the realness and the rawness of Life and all we get to do in it.

And I freaking rocked it.

And it felt amazing.

There is something magnificently edifying about speaking your Truth, despite the slight knock in your knees. To tell yourself more than anyone else that you’re ready to just spill it, no holding back, no worries of how it will be received.

Something simple and wonderful about knowing that you don’t need to reach the world, don’t need to convince anyone, don’t need to speak to anyone except those you’re here to speak to, those you’re here to connect with, those who are here to connect with you.

Experiences like this rewrite things in your heart, rewrite them with messages that have no words, with understanding that is beyond what I could summarize.

But it’s something about the courage of a lion, the power of vulnerability, the audacity of self-approval, the celebration of Life.

And it is good.

What about you: How have you confronted your fear of putting yourself “out there”?

*Heck yeah it’s an affiliate link!