Instead of putting our attention on ways to “get over” stage fright or “cover up” anxiety in front of groups–ways of focusing that just attract more of what we don’t want–we focus on the pleasure of being natural in front of the room and let ourselves receive positive appreciation for our unique essence.

We let the anxiety breathe, take its sweet time, expand, be witnessed, become transparent, have words if they arise. In short, we have a positive experience with what we had presumed to be “the problem.”

The real problem was that we thought the nervous energy was wrong and we focused on getting rid of it for us to have relief. No, that stuck nervous energy is simply our vital life force compressed by the memory of past unhappy experiences in front of groups.

As soon as you have a good experience, or even a neutral experience in front of an understanding group that holds a gentle space for you to let yourself be, a chunk of that underlying anxiety iceberg is melted off, forever. (Remember, it’s only a thought-form anyway.)

Subsequent turns dissolve more and more of the un-ease until there is nothing left of it. It seems as magic because the less we try up there the more rapid the progress. This is difficult for some because they think that nothing real can happen without efforting.

What’s happening is that by practicing and learning how to invite more of your natural essential self in this moment; by no longer struggling to overcome or vanquish what you think you don’t want, you attract ease in front of groups beyond your wildest imagination.

(May 2007)