Public speaking has been one of my biggest fears for as long as I can remember. Just the thought of it has always made my mind go blank, heart race, and mouth run dry, so I've spent most of my life trying to avoid being in the spotlight.
If you've read any of my other blog posts you know that I have been on quite a journey over the past year, and in the one that started it all, 365 Days of Saying Yes, I wrote about how going through Gabby Bernstein's Spirit Junkie Masterclass training was one of the major things that has helped me to chart a new course for myself, and become more of myself.
What I didn't say in that post is that during the level 2 training in February 2015, I told Gabby I'd rather "jump out a window" than do any sort of public speaking. I know that sounds dramatic, but that is honestly how I felt.
In the months since, I've started to peel back the layers and ask myself where this fear was coming from and it always ends up back at fear of judgment and rejection.
I've made major progress in releasing those fears, but they also became so ingrained in my psyche over a lifetime that releasing them is a daily practice, and they can pop up when I least expect them.
Sometimes, that fear voice will come in when I'm trying something new and say, "What if you mess up and forget what you want to say? What if people think your ideas are stupid? What if you make a joke and nobody laughs?"
So, one night when I was thinking about all of this, I chose to listen to the other voice, that loving voice of inner knowing and intuition.
Before I knew it, I was actually letting the deep full body feeling of that fear wash over me. I didn't try and numb it or push it away. I let myself surrender to it and really feel it. And then something I never expected happened.
My desire to chip away at that fear and move toward being free from it became more important to me than holding onto it and staying "safe." In a moment, something shifted and I decided to make an impromptu video to push myself WAY outside my comfort zone and face that fear head on.
I didn't stop to fix my hair, or put make-up on, or adjust the lighting. I just did it. And it was liberating.
I know many people wrestle with a fear of public speaking, so I wanted to share my unedited attempt at speaking off the cuff about just that in the video below.
It's far from perfect; I mixed up my words multiple times and my phone is turned the wrong way (not to mention it fell over at one point!), but embracing imperfection and actually rejoicing in it is all part of the process.
I mean, really, who wants to be perfect anyway? Falling down, messing up, learning, and growing is all part of what makes life fun and interesting and real, right? Thanks for watching!