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The Pleasure Principle

of Public Speaking

 

 

 

 

 

Public Speaking From the Center of the Earth

By Lee Glickstein

Your first 15 seconds in front of a group--whether giving a talk or opening a meeting or training--presents an extraordinary opportunity to meet your audience at the one point in time and in space you all share in common.
The time is the moment, and the place is the center of the earth. As you practice being an expansive, inviting presence when all eyes are suddenly upon you, anxiety dissolves.

Effective communicators know that 90% of their mastery is about where they "come from" before a word is spoken. I come from the center of the earth, and so can you. Relational Presence practice taught me how to do that in front of any size group, as well as one-on-one.

You see, when we surrender to gravity, our root energy drops down, down, down to the precise magnetic center of the earth. It's the law! When you allow this to happen, which, with practice takes less than 15 seconds, it's like flipping a light switch that taps you into the full power of the room. Your listeners start breathing more deeply and relaxing down, down, down to join you playing toe-sies at the center of the earth.

From here, you cannot help but see the striking beauty of their souls shining through their eyes. If you don't see this, you are working too hard to make something happen. Remember, your job is be, not do, which does take practice.
Your words then arise and resonate as if from within your listeners. As you remain in Relational Presence with one person at a time, your entire talk flows from your authentic self and they more receptive listeners and learners in the expanded moment.

As I ask Speaking Circle participants to drop down to the center of the earth before saying a word, no matter how long it takes, newcomers are dissolving anxiety naturally and finding the sweet spot faster, and oldcomers are finding new life in the depth. Does this "soft" way of public speaking work in the real world? I have heard concerns that Relational Presence is an approach too soft for business presentations. But the softness is in the supportive learning environment, while the skill learned will work with any presentation style in any situation.

When I am teaching in the "real world" I find myself being bold and businesslike, demonstrative and precise, and without the extended silences that are part of the step-by-step practice encouraged in a training. The real world situation brings out exactly what is called for in the moment once you learn to trust yourself and allow the flow to happen naturally.

We have heard how Relational Presence works in court under antagonistic cross-examination, in high pressure interviews and negotiations, and on the highest levels of professional speaking.
You might say that coming from the center of the earth is bottom line communication.

© Copyright 2009-2010, Lee Glickstein. All rights reserved.

 

 

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