6 Facts About Public Speaking Anxiety

Is a Keynote by Next Week Possible? Find Out How.

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When I was a child I was ultra shy. The middle child in my family, I developed the pattern of letting my older sister do the decision-making and my younger brother handle conversation.
That pattern made me comfortable yet did little to help me break away from the communication barriers I created. What this means is, I had problems entering conversation, getting to know people, making decisions and ?feeling confident around people. Later in life when encouraged to speak up at meetings or to groups, I suffered physical anxieties like diarhea triggers, focus issues, cold hands, and weak knees.
Researchers tell us that social phobias like public speaking anxiety start in childhood with shyness. If we don’t address them, they progress through adulthood.

Can you relate? Chances are, you can. Lawyers — 58% are introverts — have high propensity to be able to relate. Their communication strengths are usually in the spoken word vs. the oral. Communication and social behaviors are often what holds them back.
Of the general public, less than 50% are introverts. Still, when it comes to phobias, research states that Glossophobia (fear of public speaking) remains #1 of all phobias. Public speaking and social anxiety, often used interchangeably, are experienced in our heads, our bodies and our behavior patterns. We compare ourselves to those who actually have the guts to stand up to address groups. I did for years.
The 16 years I was in public education I attended yearly continuing education seminars and trainings, paying more attention to the presenter than their material. Often my mind wandered to “Gosh, it would be so cool to be able to be that comfortable in front of an audience.” I watched their styles, paid attention to their movement, their gestures, their way of relaxing into who they were with.
Fortunately I learned techniques to do the same. But it still amazes me to hear people’s stories about fearing public speaking and then to read up on facts about public speaking anxiety. Consider the following 6 facts and how they relate to you.

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