It used to be that you could not pay me any amount of money to speak in public. In fact my fear of speaking was so strong that my Kindergarten teacher wrote about it in my end-of-the-year report card. The next several years, all of my teachers made about the same comment, “Sarah needs to speak up more”.
So how did I go from not speaking, to now getting paid to speak and having much of my business revolve around speaking in public and in the media?
It all started with me realizing that the reasons for “speaking up” were more important that the reasons for not “speaking up.”
In high school, my reasons were about passion to help others. I was Key Club president and part of Amnesty International and SADD. I traveled to Europe in my Junior year as part of the organization People to People International. I became a story teller at the local Library and a Candy Striper at the local hospital. My involvement in all of those organizations required me to “speak up” about causes I believed in. I overcame my fear because my passion for what I was doing was so high.
Can you think of some things you are passionate about – so much so, that you would be willing to overcome a fear of speaking?
Later in college I became part of a direct sales company where I became even more confident in speaking in front of people.
Now I speak nearly every week on teleseminars, radio, TV, in front of lunch groups or at large conferences!
Speaking allows you to do several things to grow your business as well! Here are just a few of them:
- Speaking enlarges your audience: Even a “small” blogger at a conference has at least 140 people that they know and influence. When they are impressed after hearing you speak they may share about you with those in their sphere of influence.
- Speaking gives you opportunities to be heard by people who wouldn’t ever read your blog and in so doing expands you to their audiences.
- Speaking gives you opportunities to be a guest speaker at “local events” or to “local groups” because people typically bring locally the people they have already met and know, like, and trust.
- Speaking increases the possibility of future free or low cost advertising with the people who will now know, like, and trust you after seeing you speak.
Take a moment and think about your own reasons for “speaking up”. What are they and how will you begin “speaking up” more? Leave a comment below!
If you are looking for someone to speak at a event, lunch group, or conference; I would love to speak to you!