Confidence is a slippery word. It could describe a Kardashian as much as a Luther King, an influencer as much as an intellectual.
So perhaps we need to provide our own definition. I’m not at all interested in surface confidence. All jazzy, flashy, look at me, floating on the surfaces of things. All the striding around the stage, the strange “power pose”, the weird hand gestures all jar us when we see them, somehow glued on from outside. The junk food of speaking, ultimately leaving you unsatisfied.
The depth of true confidence has a charge.When you hear great speakers (or great performers in any sphere) you are seeing something that is sourced very deep. The very word confidence means trust in yourself. And trust doesn’t exist at surface level, it has deep roots.
And unsurprisingly my advice to speakers who care about finding that settled trust in themselves on stage, is to do the deep work. The sources of great speaking are simple. Great speakers are always great listeners first. They listen to their audiences, they listen to themselves. Great speakers are also readers. Great speakers are also writers. Words are the source. And when you feed your thinking, when you read, when you form ideas into writing, all of that feeds into your speaking.
It’s not instant – nothing worth having is. But simply taking time to feed your interests, to read great writing, and to write about what you love, will show up for you when you stand up to speak. Your audience will hear in your quiet trust in yourself that there is a depth of thinking to your words, and that is the truest confidence of all.
So over the summer, take time to read, to write, to listen. Feed the source.
Good thinking, good writing creates good speaking. We author our authority.
I shared a short video about this earlier in the week which you can watch by clicking on the link below.
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