Getting Over Yourself

September 6, 2012

A really good speaker vs. a great speaker

San Antonio, Mayor, Julian Castro made his city and his family proud with his speech at the Democratic Convention. He did all the things you would be taught to do to be a good speaker and he did them well.
Michelle Obama and President Clinton just upped the ante.
Abraham Mazlow names 4 stages of learning: unconscious incompetency (ignorance is bliss); conscious incompetency (I can’t do that); conscious competency (if I focus on it I’ll get it right); and unconscious competency (what was the big deal?).
And there you have it. Castro is still aware of getting it right–Michelle and Bill can give themselves over entirely to the message.
You’ll be sought after as a speaker if you can do anywhere near as well as Castro. And then, why not aspire for unconscious competency where you have the possibility of molding and shaping an audience with your message?

Ann vs. Michelle

Okay, really they both were good, so “vs.” probably isn’t accurate.
They both spoke from the heart with good pauses, good eye contact, genuine appreciation for the subject of their talks.

One thin they (and all the “regular” folks who talked) illustrated is that it’s easier to stay focused on your message if  you know you’re not the reason that you’re speaking. It’s harder for candidates (would you really want to run for President and take all guff?) to divorce themselves because they’re going to take flak no matter what they say.
But if you want to improve your speaking, I recommend that you watch whichever speakers you find dynamic (lots to choose from these Convention weeks) several times. It will help you with your rhythms. Don’t try to copy, just absorb the rhythm of a speaker who is completely with the idea and not focused on technique or adulation.

Again, I think it’s quite instructive to watch how they handle the crowds chanting and applauding when they’re introduced as well how how they handle the interruptions.

Michelle Obama has such poise that she could acknowledge that the interruptive applause was taking place, but not let it control her being in charge of the occasion. It was masterful. As was the rest of her speech.

If you can forget the politics and appreciate the speakers, there’s  a ton you can learn from these speakers.

And, since everything is streamed online, you can watch anything you’ve missed and take time to analyze what’s working and not working.

Don’t you love the free lessons?

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