On Getting Past Fears of Public Speaking: Lessons From a Potter’s Wheel

Public speaking lessons from potterySo, I recently stepped out of my comfort zone to have a bash at something I’ve always thought I’d be useless at – a pottery workshop with my missus (a birthday gift).

And I don’t mind admitting that my expectations were remarkably low. I assumed I’d be the sort who’d have clay flying everywhere and produce nothing more than wonky, misshapen, unrecognisable  ‘thingies’ never intended/destined for the light of day (or public view).

But, fortunately (and there was an element of chance in this), I choose a wonderfully talented and inspiring instructor (Hannah at Ballymorris Pottery – which is right beside Bunratty Castle in County Clare)…

…And that made all the difference in the world.

She managed to allay our fears of messing up (the self same fears that get in the way of honing public speaking skills) and helped us get to a ‘you can do this’ mindset.


2 Ways to Conquer Self-Doubt and Speak Up With More Confidence – Podcast 85

Overcome Self Doubt and Speak Up With ConfidenceHas self-doubt ever caused you to ‘not’ speak up at a meeting or event, even where you knew in your heart and soul that your voice should have been heard?

If you said yes, you’re not alone.

Over the years, I’m worked with thousands of seriously smart business leaders and professionals who regularly backed away from situations where they wanted to say something and didn’t.

How come? Why on earth not?


Leap Past Fears of Public Speaking: 7 Anxiety Busting Insights – Podcast 84

Overcome Public Speaking FearsIt’s a fact. Three out of four adults, perhaps including you, admit to having fears about public speaking.

And the upshot? Far too many people regularly avoid opportunities to speak up…

…Which, in turn, creates lose-lose outcomes – both for those who bypass chances to share valuable ideas or insights and audiences who would have benefited, if only they had heard these things.

What a waste, right? And this begs 2 obvious questions:

‘What’s going on?’ and, if this applies to you, “what can a body do about it?”


7 Simple Insights From the World of Fitness Training for Speakers – Podcast 14


Kiwifit.ieDo you feel fighting fit when it comes to your speaking skills or are you more on the ‘ring shy’ side of things if asked to step up a podium?

For years I associated the phrase “no pain no gain” with exercise videos made by Jane Fonda – an advocate of the ‘feel the burn’ school of exercise – in the 80s.

Silly me. It turns out that this catch phrase wasn’t original. The US patriot and founding father (and inspirational speaker) Benjamin Franklin coined these words back in 1758 in his essay ‘The Way to Wealth’.

Who knew?

But here’s the thing, just as those who promote fitness may learn a thing or two about how to inspire more of us to turn up at gyms by paying attention to great communicators – who use the power of their words, stories and imagery to motivate people towards action…

Those who’d like to feel more confident about their ability to inspire others with their words can learn from fitness gurus too.