While there are tons of professional public speakers out there, it is a common problem that many find trouble connecting with their audiences. Although you might be an expert in your field, it can be hard to have your message resonate with the audience, especially if you’re speaking for an hour or longer.
One of the main causes of this issue is that many public speakers don’t come off as authentic during their speeches. For fear of being too vulnerable and open with their audiences, it’s common for public speakers to fail at connecting with their audiences.
And this makes complete sense. When you’re a public speaker, there can be a fine line between giving your professional opinion and delving too deep into your personal life in front of a room of complete strangers.
I discovered this issue in my personal life many years ago. A former student from a personal development course had reached out to get my thoughts on an assignment he had due. Rather than getting back to him immediately, I stalled. It was an early morning for me, and I didn’t feel the need to share my time with this former student.
However, I soon realized that my refusal to share my time with this student was similar to my shortcomings as a speaker. Because I neglected my student in the same way I did my audience, I fell short of truly connecting to either of them.
As a public speaker, your audience wants to hear about your experiences. The context of your life is what makes you an expert and a thought leader on stage, not just the knowledge you possess. People want to hear:
- Where you have struggled
- Why you have your struggles
- What you did to overcome your struggles
- How your life changed after conquering your hardships
While these things are personal, they make your story more authentic and believable. Although it can be difficult to share personal anecdotes, with complete strangers, your stories, pain, and triumph are what’s going to resonate with people the most, not a list of cold hard facts.
I remember once sitting at a seminar and the leader said, “Many people say, I will be intimate with others, share who I am, once I get to know them”. He then went on to encourage us to share sooner “as it is sharing that actually creates intimacy and connection.” I now love sharing and do this with family, friends, training, coaching, and from the stage.
Sharing your truth can be an incredibly powerful tool. Many people learn through storytelling rather than a list of ideas or facts to learn. In the same way that religious texts teach us lessons through stories, you can connect with your audience through your own stories as well.
If you’re looking to become more connected to your audience, there is no easier way than being truthful with them. However, you don’t need to share the whole truth, since that can be too much and even dangerous to share. The trick is to find the balance of sharing your story while also feeling comfortable in the information you tell your audience.
It is a truly powerful and underrated tool to use.
So, don’t be “Sparing with your Sharing” and embrace. Bask in the power of ‘Caring By Sharing,’ especially when it comes to speaking from the stage.
Yours Powerfully Sharing.
Let’s #Share #Learn #Grow