Man wearing fake nose, eyeglasses, mustache and PPE.

Glossophobia, or the fear of public speaking, is real and pervasive. At least 80% suffer from this fear, so it’s natural to experience stress about being observed and judged when presenting in front of an audience. Speaking virtually exacerbates this condition. After all, Homo Sapiens historically observed others because they wanted to eat, breed with, or kill them.

After years of training in various industries, we found a deeper activator. The fear of being found out for something you're not fans the flames of stage fright. Professional actors learn to assume roles and manage the anxiety that comes with acting. However, many non-actors make stage fright worse by telling themselves “I have to appear more professional, more articulate or more formal.” They are acting, but without the skill or experience to carry it off.

When you speak, present a genuine, authentic version of yourself. Suit your behavior and language to the audience, but don’t act a role. Concentrate on what you want to accomplish (your intention) and present an unvarnished version of yourself. You will no doubt express what we’ve heard for years: “You’ve given me permission to be myself.”

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