I know, I know, we’ve still got 3 ½ months of 2015 to go, but my mind keeps wandering to the promise of a New Year sparkling with new goals, full of new opportunities.
Then my mind wanders back to all I said I would do in 2015 that I haven’t done yet. Like the podcast I’ve been meaning to launch or the pitch to Business Insider that I need to send.
In fact, I’ve been running into friends and colleagues who swore to me at the beginning of 2015 that this was this year that they would get their speaking crap together. They want to speak at TED or a big industry event. They were determined at the beginning of 2015.
Now as we wind down towards the end, and I ask them how their speaking is going, nothing has happened.
Life got in the way. There was the condo to sell or their sister’s wedding to attend or something else came up.
But frankly I’m not buying any of those life circumstance excuses, there’s something even bigger getting in the way of accomplishing this goal. Honestly, it’s the same thing that gets into all of our ways.
The biggest obstacle in making your speaking goals happen is:
Let’s tackle the issue that is YOU. What do you say if you and I both get out of our own way and finish strong in 2015?
#1 Is your mind your bff or saying terrible things about you?
“Who are YOU to be talking about this?”
“Who are YOU to be on stage?”
“Don’t you know that other people are more qualified than YOU?”
You would never allow a friend to speak to you the way your brain talks to you. If a friend questioned your ability, you’d tell them “to hit the road jack and don’t ya come back no more, no more, no more.”
But when your mind doubts your worth, you don’t tell it to shut its pie hole! Iinstead, you believe that it is right.
Next time you think about getting on stage and your brain starts playing with you, replace that thought with what the quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks says to himself “Why not me?”
Who are you to be on stage? Why not you?
It’s empowering as heck to think that and spurns you to action!
#2 Have you fallen into the research trap?
You’re reading blogs. You’re watching TED talks. You’re reading books. You’ve signed up for so many newsletters about speaking that your mind spins with ideas.
You’ve fallen into the research trap. You are constantly on the search for what you believe you need to learn before you can start to take action.
To adapt a quote from jazz great Thelonious Monk:
“Reading about speaking is like dancing about architecture.”
It’s time to step away from the research, and jump headlong into action.
What is one thing that you’ve read in the past week that you can do RIGHT NOW (or as soon as you’re done reading this post) that will drive you towards your speaking goals?
Want accountability? Tweet me with your action @drmichellemazur.
#3 Fear and not the “afraid of getting on stage” variety
Tara Mohr in her book “Playing Big” explains there are two types of fear.
There’s the lizard brain type of fear that many people have of public speaking. And yes, this type of fear gets in the way for many speakers.
But I want to focus on the second type of fear, the fear of stepping into a bigger version of who you are. The fear of actualizing your goal, of getting your message into the hands of people who need it.
You can’t let this fear stop you. It’s time to reframe this fear into what it is – excitement for what is possible.
When you feel the calling to share your message, it’s scary because you are putting you out there and becoming who you are meant to be.
When you take the step to move toward your speaking goal, and you feel fear, think of this quote by Robert Heller or it might be from Fritz Perls or even Carl Jung:
“Fear is excitement without the breath.”
Take a deep breath, feel the excitement, and then take the next step.
#4 Is speaking on your calendar?
I’m not talking about having a gig on your calendar. I am talking about scheduling time weekly to work on crafting your speech, practicing your delivery skills or working on your speaker marketing.
This reason is less sexy than talking about fear or your monkey mind playing tricks on you, but often times it’s the simplest reason that keeps us from our goals.
If speaking is not on your calendar, it’s easy to put off your speaking to “next week” or “next month” which quickly becomes next year.
If speaking is a goal for your business or a personal goal, hop over to your calendar and schedule one hour a week to work on it. Not read about it or think deep thoughts about speaking, but to actually work on speaking.
No matter your reason for putting off speaking, it’s time to:
Get out of your own way and start!
Let’s end 2015 strong. If you feel like you need more support, help developing an action plan for your speaking, and accountability from a group of people working toward the same goals, then join me for the final round of The Speaking Collective. You’ll get out of your own way and kick off 2016 in a place to make your speaking dreams a reality.