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“KEEP IT UP. WE ALL HAVE TO START SOMEWHERE.”

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Hi, I'm Krystal.
Welcome to The Proffitt Podcast - where we teach you how to create  content with confidence.
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Elsewhere

Public speaking is scary, right?

 

Getting on stage, standing in front of total strangers…
Hoping you don’t forget what you’re supposed to say…
Praying you don’t have to pee right before you walk up there…
Begging God to not let you pass out on stage…

But for me, it’s not that bad anymore.

 

Hang on a sec. That’s not 100% accurate. Let me rephrase…

 

I spent my life from ages 4-18 in front of crowds – whether it was cheering on the sidelines of a peewee football game, standing up and speaking in front of an auditorium of kids for a Student Council meeting, or jumping up when the teacher asked for a volunteer.

Then, I decided to go to college and study Business. In one of my classes, I found out that you can actually study to stand in front of a classroom and give presentations all day.

I quickly changed my major from Computer Information Systems (I thought I wanted to be a computer programmer until I learned you have to already know A LOT about computers) to MARKETING.

Marketing was the answer to my dreams of standing in front of a room and everyone listening.

I spent 4 years giving presentations about anything: Businesses, Nonprofits, Ideas, Strategies, Services, Pricing models, Business Plans, and even recreating companies from the ground up.

It was during this time in college that I fell in love with talking to people and exploring ideas.

At the same time, I was lucky enough to work at my alma mater – Texas State University (“Eat ‘Em Up Cats!”) – where I had the opportunity to emcee many internal events on campus.

SIDENOTE: This job and being a part of the internal events on campus gave me the opportunity to meet Erin Freaking Brockovich! Though, she would have said the other F-word. Because she did. That night. On campus. Many times. And it echoed throughout the entire amphitheater. And, of course, all of the college students cheered!
You can Read About it Here.

Luckily I had a boss who helped us develop our natural skills & strengths. So when she asked for student volunteers to help with internal events I jumped at the opportunity. Just like that young student I was begging to help the teacher.

And guess what? She gave me the opportunity to show up in a huge way at 19 years old.

Along with another student employee, we became the event emcees for the big End of the Year Banquet every year. This involved being a part of the committee that planned everything from the food to the seating arrangements.

I wasn’t directly involved in the flow of how everything was going to go. This was still a professional organization after all and they needed to have some “adults” in charge of the whole ordeal.

If it were left up to the college students to plan we’d’ve been either WAY over budget or eating Totino’s Pepperoni Rolls. We weren’t that responsible yet anyway.

But during those 3.5 years working on campus, I got the opportunity to speak in front of crowds of familiar faces in big auditoriums professionally set up with proper equipment.

From Marketing to Public Speaking

Texas State College Student

This was at a Marketing Conference I went to in college. More on suits on my ABOUT page.

I loved it!

I loved standing on stage and talking to people.
Hearing them laugh at the times I hoped they would.
Hearing them clap when I mentioned a name everyone respected.
Watching them smile as I looked out into the crowd after taking the stage.

I even got compliments when I was done that I did a great job. Other student employees asked me, “Weren’t you nervous up there doing that?” Or they said, “There’s no way I’d get on stage and do that!”

But I loved it!
And I wanted to have that feeling again and again and again.

So after I graduated and moved on with life, I’ve been trying to find a way to continue public speaking.

I’ve had book signings where I was given the opportunity to say a few words in front of small crowds of people. I’ve led Bible Study Devotionals in front of a dozen women. I’ve spoken to groups of 50 or more mamas who were happy to have a few minutes to themselves.

But one of the most fun opportunities I’ve had is being able to share with other female entrepreneurs all of the things I’ve learned.

I compiled a list of “10 Things I Do Before I Go on Stage” and here are the first 5:

1. Practice, Practice, Practice

  • Practice in front of a mirror.
  • Practice in the car.
  • Practice in front of your dog.
  • Practice any chance you get so you are as prepared as possible for your audience.

2. Go to the Bathroom

  • This seems like an obvious thing but trust me…you don’t want to be on stage pacing back and forth because you forgot to run to the restroom.
  • Work in a few extra minutes right before you go on stage to run to the restroom.

3. Look Over Your Notes

  • Whether you are presenting with a slideshow or just speaking with a mic, look over your notes one last time.
  • Refreshing your memory right before you go on stage can make all the difference in keeping your train of thought!

4. Don’t Eat Anything Before Going on Stage

  • This may be too much information and may not be the case for everyone, but some foods make me burp. We’re all human and can relate to that, right?
  • The last thing you want to worry about when you go on stage is having to hold back a huge burp or worse, muffle the mic because you can’t hold it back.
  • I speak from experience on this one…don’t eat right before you go on stage!

5. Wear Clothing You’re Comfortable In

  • The last thing you want when you’re on stage is to be uncomfortable!
  • Whether it’s shoes that hurt your feet, a dress that’s too tight, or a shirt that doesn’t allow your arms to move, uncomfortable clothes can distract you.
  • Try your outfit on and practice how you’ll speak – at the very least, do this the day of your talk.
  • Make sure you can move around the way you will be during your speech.

Those are 5 Things I Do Before I Go on Stage, but if you want the whole list just download it from my Resource Library.

Download the Complete List
“10 Things I Do Before I Go on Stage”
from My Resource Library.

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Do YOU have a fear of speaking on stage?

 

If you do, you’re normal.
Everyone has a fear of looking stupid or saying the wrong thing.
But don’t let that hold you back.
If you want to speak on stage, get in front of a crowd every opportunity you can.

 

Speak at your church. (Bible Study Counts!)
Speak at your child’s school. (PTO Meetings Count!)
Speak at your family reunions. (Making a Toast or Saying Grace Counts!)

 

Take advantage of all opportunities that come your way. 
You get better the more your practice.
And the fear subsides once it feels like second nature.

Here are some quotes from people that admit to their fears of public speaking!

When I went to Los Angeles right after high school, I got some acting jobs, and I never, ever wanted to be an actress! Public speaking and acting make me want to vomit. But I have never been nervous singing. When it comes to public speaking, I stumble on my words, sweat, and pull at my clothes. – Kelly Clarkson

 

I majored in sociology and never took a single music-related course, much less any kind of class in public speaking – no confidence for it, none – yet I still had a passion for it that burned inside me. – Regis Philbin

 

Public speaking, for me, or speaking even in front of a handful of people is my greatest fear. – Bill Clegg

 

If you’re not comfortable with public speaking – and nobody starts out comfortable; you have to learn how to be comfortable – practice. I cannot overstate the importance of practicing. Get some close friends or family members to help evaluate you, or somebody at work that you trust. – Hillary Clinton

 

We don’t always have an accurate view of our own potential. I think most people who are frightened of public speaking and can’t imagine they might feel different as a result of training. Don’t assume you know how much potential you have. Sometimes the only way to know what you can do is to test yourself. – Scott Adams

Alright Rookies, since I’m in a constant state of learning – so I can help you get better and be better – I wanted to ask you a question…

 

What is YOUR biggest fear of public speaking?

 

Leave a comment below, message me on social, or feel free to shoot me an email at Krystal@KrystalProffitt.com.

Remember…

Keep It Up, Rookies! We All Have to Start Somewhere!

Also, be sure to check out this week’s Episode 28 of the podcast where I chat a little more about Marketing & Public Speaking!

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HI, I'M Krystal Proffitt

Podcast coach, content strategist, best-selling author, lifelong cheerleader, and content marketer

Podcaster • Cheerleader • Coach •

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