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7 Things To Remember If You Want To Get Over Fear Successfully

7 Things To Remember If You Want To Get Over Fear Successfully

Fear prevents us from pursuing that which we feel is risky, even if such pursuits are what we see as true to ourselves.  Fear paralyzes and prevents us from experiencing life at its highest level of wholeness.  It holds us back.  To properly transcend the chains of fear (which are often perpetuated by self-conscious and delusional behavior) there are some basic things we should remember.

1. Fear relies on your perspective.

Jerry Seinfeld has a joke about public speaking.  He quotes a statistic he read, which stated that the average person fears public speaking more than death.  In other words, at a funeral, they would rather be in the coffin than give the eulogy.  This is a reminder of the loss of perspective fear can impose upon us.  You can only fear that of which you are convinced is a threat. Changing your mind allows for relief from fear.

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2. Meditation gives you the tools to conquer fear.

Even five or ten minutes of meditation daily can improve your response to fear.  Meditate on that which you fear. Let the reasons behind the fear be revealed and contemplated.  Dig deep without overwhelming yourself. Meditation helps us realize that fear is often not grounded in reality.  You can get over it with diligence and mindfulness.

3. Empathy destroys fear.

Try to put yourself in the shoes of someone you imagine to be fearless, or at least unconcerned with whatever particular fear you find is holding you back.  Try to understand their microcosm of experience, their unique individual perspective.  What is it ideologically that allows them to not fear X or Y?  What adaptations in your own thinking can you allow for that will get rid of your fear?

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4. Taking action will set you free.

The hardest part about conquering fear is the psychologically-inflicted torment we perpetuate upon ourselves every time fear prevents action.  Build yourself up enough that you allow yourself to take risks.  Confront what you fear.  It will not be easy, but fear’s worst enemy is its own reflection in a mirror.  Face fear and it will disappear.  If the emotion holds you back from doing something you truly want to do, work towards mindfully pursuing what you fear. This will help you realize it has no power over you.

5. Focus on the present.

Most of our anxieties are imposed by the haunting past or looming future.  Practice being comfortable with whatever you have to deal with in the present.  As you focus less on external circumstances and learn to simply be in the now, fears will fade away into the background.  In the present, we have very little to be afraid of.  Future expectations diminish and concerns about past actions become irrelevant.  Do what you can with what you have, right now.

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6. Write it down.

The subjectivity of thought can magnify our fears and make them seem more imposing than they really are.  Convert your fears from ideas into words; contextualize them.  Write down what it exactly it is that you are afraid of and ways you believe you can work towards eliminating your fear.  In organizing your ideas on paper, you’ll find a level of clarity unachievable exclusively in your own head.

7. You’re not alone.

We all have our fears, hopes and dreams.  We all slip up and focus more on the past and future than the present.  Find a valuable support system for overcoming your fears.  Build an exchange in which you and someone else help one another psychologically overcome that which you are afraid of.  Learn to communicate your insecurities with others and, in articulating your fears, you will be taking a step towards eliminating them.

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Last Updated on December 2, 2018

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

7 Public Speaking Techniques To Help Connect With Your Audience

When giving a presentation or speech, you have to engage your audience effectively in order to truly get your point across. Unlike a written editorial or newsletter, your speech is fleeting; once you’ve said everything you set out to say, you don’t get a second chance to have your voice heard in that specific arena.

You need to make sure your audience hangs on to every word you say, from your introduction to your wrap-up. You can do so by:

1. Connecting them with each other

Picture your typical rock concert. What’s the first thing the singer says to the crowd after jumping out on stage? “Hello (insert city name here)!” Just acknowledging that he’s coherent enough to know where he is is enough for the audience to go wild and get into the show.

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It makes each individual feel as if they’re a part of something bigger. The same goes for any public speaking event. When an audience hears, “You’re all here because you care deeply about wildlife preservation,” it gives them a sense that they’re not just there to listen, but they’re there to connect with the like-minded people all around them.

2. Connect with their emotions

Speakers always try to get their audience emotionally involved in whatever topic they’re discussing. There are a variety of ways in which to do this, such as using statistics, stories, pictures or videos that really show the importance of the topic at hand.

For example, showing pictures of the aftermath of an accident related to drunk driving will certainly send a specific message to an audience of teenagers and young adults. While doing so might be emotionally nerve-racking to the crowd, it may be necessary to get your point across and engage them fully.

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3. Keep going back to the beginning

Revisit your theme throughout your presentation. Although you should give your audience the credit they deserve and know that they can follow along, linking back to your initial thesis can act as a subconscious reminder of why what you’re currently telling them is important.

On the other hand, if you simply mention your theme or the point of your speech at the beginning and never mention it again, it gives your audience the impression that it’s not really that important.

4. Link to your audience’s motivation

After you’ve acknowledged your audience’s common interests in being present, discuss their motivation for being there. Be specific. Using the previous example, if your audience clearly cares about wildlife preservation, discuss what can be done to help save endangered species’ from extinction.

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Don’t just give them cold, hard facts; use the facts to make a point that they can use to better themselves or the world in some way.

5. Entertain them

While not all speeches or presentations are meant to be entertaining in a comedic way, audiences will become thoroughly engaged in anecdotes that relate to the overall theme of the speech. We discussed appealing to emotions, and that’s exactly what a speaker sets out to do when he tells a story from his past or that of a well-known historical figure.

Speakers usually tell more than one story in order to show that the first one they told isn’t simply an anomaly, and that whatever outcome they’re attempting to prove will consistently reoccur, given certain circumstances.

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6. Appeal to loyalty

Just like the musician mentioning the town he’s playing in will get the audience ready to rock, speakers need to appeal to their audience’s loyalty to their country, company, product or cause. Show them how important it is that they’re present and listening to your speech by making your words hit home to each individual.

In doing so, the members of your audience will feel as if you’re speaking directly to them while you’re addressing the entire crowd.

7. Tell them the benefits of the presentation

Early on in your presentation, you should tell your audience exactly what they’ll learn, and exactly how they’ll learn it. Don’t expect them to listen if they don’t have clear-cut information to listen for. On the other hand, if they know what to listen for, they’ll be more apt to stay engaged throughout your entire presentation so they don’t miss anything.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm4.staticflickr.com

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