If you (like me) have ever felt nervous, anxious or a sheer sense of dread before presenting in front of a group or sales meeting, I’ve got a brand new podcast episode just for you.

Presentation and speaking skills coach Marianna Swallow is on the show this week to share tactical, actionable strategies that you can use TODAY to get better at managing your nerves during web design presentations or sales meetings.

The reality is, we all feel nerves before speaking in public. No matter the size of the group.

Having those nerves is not a bad thing, in fact, you can use them to your benefit by channeling them to your energy and excitement during a presentation.

But there’s more to the story when it comes to becoming more confident in a sales or presentation setting and that’s why I’m excited to bring an expert like Marianna on to help you become more confident starting today.

We cover:

  • What to do when you’re feeling nervous speaking in front of a group
  • How to discover the triggers on what personally make you nervous
  • How to deal with talking fast or talking too slow
  • How to slow down your buzzing mind in front of a group
  • Finding the right warm up method that works for you

And so much more.

Enjoy!

In this episode:

00:00 – Overcoming Nervousness in Public Speaking
05:05 – The Importance of Public Speaking
15:12 – Importance of Nervousness in Public Speaking
19:17 – Manage Nerves in Public Speaking
32:37 – Managing Nerves and Finding Confidence
42:27 – Calibrating and Scaling Energy for Presentations
47:49 – Pressure to Know Everything in Work
53:53 – Overcoming Anxiety in Presentations
1:03:48 – The Fear of Public Speaking

This Podcast Episode Sponsored by Web Design Business Course


Connect with Marianna:

Episode #283 Full Transcription
Marianna:

There’s no need to call attention to your inexperience, your nerves, whatever. Because why put a negative in your audience’s head? You don’t know what they’re thinking of you, nor do you need to. You just need to put your best self out there. I feel like it’s cliche, but really I was like why did you even say anything? This was an awesome class. She was better than my regular teacher.

Josh:

Welcome to the Web Design Business Podcast with your host, josh Hall, helping you build a web design business that gives you freedom and a lifestyle you love. Hello friend, Great to have you here for this episode of the Web Design Business Podcast. Well, we’re going to dive into managing your nerves and managing your anxiousness, anxiety and feelings of dread for those of you who have to do any sort of presentation or public speaking. And the reality is, if you own your own web design business, you are going to have to at some point, speak in front of a small group and even if you’re not in a networking group or doing workshops or seminars or trainings or anything like that, you will end up at some point in the room of a board or a group of people, whether it be three people or 10. And it feels like a daunting public speaking experience, regardless of how many people there are, and I know that from painful experience. But I, like a lot of others, have learned to embrace those nervous feelings and actually use them for good, and that’s exactly what I want to help you with in this episode. I’m so excited to bring on somebody who knows a lot about what they’re talking about when it comes to public speaking and speaking in presentations. This is Maryana Swallow, who is a speaker and public speaking coach and in this episode, my goodness does she load us up with some really good tips, tricks, practical advice on what to do with this feeling of nervousness, which you’ll find out is actually number one expected and number two okay. It is okay to feel like this Josh from 10 years ago really needed to hear that message. So if that’s you and you’re so afraid to speak and present, no matter what the size of group is, this episode, I think, is really going to help you out and I’m excited to help you out in all areas of your business. Speaking of one thing I’ve found that helps in sales and public speaking is feeling good about the web design experience for your clients. It is amazing how much confidence you’ll feel when you know that you are running your business and it is a tightly and ship shape run ship If you need help with the business side of your web design business. Very timely at the release of this episode, because this episode is coming out at the tail end of the launch sale for my business course, which, version 2.0, is live. If you have not checked out my business course, you can go to joshallco business. This is your complete guide to every aspect of the business side of web design and really the things that are holding you back from six figures and beyond are covered in my business course and I want to help you with every aspect of your business so that you feel confident in sales and presenting is amazing how those two translate. So go to joshallco business and, without any further ado, here is Mariana. We’re going to talk public speaking, presenting and making you feel more confident Before we dive in. You can find out more about her at marianaswallowcom and, yeah, any additional resources you need, check her out, follow her, let her know. You heard her on the Web Design Business Podcast and here we go, let’s have some fun. Mariana, welcome to the show. Thank you. I am so excited to talk about my hidden it’s actually not a hidden passion, but I told you before I hit record, Like if we were, if I was, in a web design business coach, I would probably help people with presenting and speaking. So I’m so excited to pick your brain on this.

Marianna:

Yeah, me too. I love speaking as much as you do, josh, and thank you for having me. I’m glad to be here.

Josh:

So timely with this talk because I have two students I coach in my web design community who have big presentations coming up. One is Angie, who is about to do a presentation for a potential $40,000 website job. So no pressure, heading into a presentation soon, so I’ll make sure she gets this conversation before she goes in there. And then I have another student, Mike, who is about to go live in a Facebook group of like thousands of potential business owners and just do a live Q&A, but it’s not something that he does often. So both of these situations have reminded me how important this is to be able to be comfortable and confident as much as possible with speaking. I asked to start off like what do you think? Why is it important? I mean, those are some practical examples, but why is this so important?

Marianna:

Why is public speaking important? Or to be calm and confident when you’re speaking? Which one?

Josh:

Ooh, let’s separate them. Yeah, tell me the difference. Yeah.

Marianna:

So public speaking. I think what a lot of people miss and I mean people I talk to conversationally, clients of mine is sometimes they get so caught up in the nerves or the what does this mean or what’s at stake, versus going for the benefits. And public speaking is so important because it raises your visibility, it is giving you leadership experience, whether you want it or not, and it’s allowing you to lead, whether it’s from the front of the room or on a Facebook live, or even in a conversation. If you’re doing a sales pitch with yourself and one other person, if it’s just two of you in the room, that’s still a presentation and it is also a conversation. But you know we got to remember that there is a benefit to speaking and presenting because it’s raising our visibility and giving us the chance to illustrate. I am the expert.

Josh:

And what is the difference that you found and maybe this is on a personal basis, but I’m curious from your experience what’s the difference between speaking like a true, like public speaking event, where you might be speaking to tens or hundreds of people, versus an intimate like small group setting, which is most web designers, that’s the case where it’s going to be a group, a board of people or maybe, you know, 20 people or something like that. What’s the difference between the two as far as how we might process the nerves?

Marianna:

Sure, absolutely Honestly, the only major difference is that it’s a different scale, Because when you think about it, Josh, what we’re trying to achieve in that moment and our purpose and our end goal is usually the same. Now you may be presenting to 5,000 people at a conference and maybe you’re not trying to sell all of them on your graphic design skills or I’m the best person for the job but you’re still selling yourself. You’re representing yourself. I’m sure you can think about conferences or events you’ve been to where you see or meet or hear from one person and you’re like, oh yeah, I’m writing down their name, I’m buying their book or I’m going to tell my students about this when I get back to Columbus and flip that around, there’s other people who we’ve gone to conferences or events or speeches or whatever and you leave like, really, they had that guy on stage. What a waste of my time. I didn’t learn anything, I was bored, I could have done a better job. Or my sister, who doesn’t even know my business, she could have spoken about that better. And that’s really. We got to remember that. That’s what’s at stake. Whether it’s a large group or a small group we’re presenting to, we are still representing ourselves and how do we want to be seen. So you’re always representing.

Josh:

And I found a big difference in my nerves, specifically the feeling of nervousness or anxiousness. I found a big difference when I was with maybe a few people or a small group versus a group of like 20 plus and it was interesting because I got more confident and comfortable doing that over and over and over again. But I do specifically remember being fine when I was at like a Panera with a few people or a small group, being myself and not having those same nerves. But as soon as I would do like a workshop or training in front of 20 people in my networking group, I felt way different. I guess, diving right into that. Why do you think that is? Why do you think that is the biggest difference? Like, why a few more set of eyeballs? Why did I feel that much more intimidated?

Marianna:

Sure. So I’m glad you brought this up, because this is something that’s so important to address and I feel like this is something I don’t get to talk to people enough about. So thank you for the question, josh. It’s not necessarily that well. There were five people in my networking group and now there’s seven at my pitch meeting at Panera. It can be, but what’s important and what’s important not just for you and the example you shared but what I would encourage everyone to think about is what is it that makes that feeling different for you? What is the scenario? Who is in the room? What type of people? Because this varies from person to person to a one. So you might ask yourself were the stakes when I had seven people, you know, were the stakes different? Or is it just I feel more comfortable with five and then above five, I feel nervous? I have a client, in fact, the one I’m going to see right after this. He’s got that same thing and for some reason, three to four is the comfort zone and the minute it’s more than four, whether they’re in a small conference room or, you know, a large group, 100 people at a conference where he can sell his services. Either way, you know six people, 100 people, freaks him out. So we’re working on that. Now, why I bring this up and why I invite you to say or look at, you know what is different about it. Once we understand what our triggers are, whether it’s the type of scenario, the person, the type of person we can then start to recognize the symptoms that are coming up then and then addressing them. Now I want to be clear. Let’s say the symptoms are, for instance, my client. He gets really excited and his thoughts kind of start racing and he forgets what he wants to say. We then can go to the root cause. But what I want to say about that is it is different for every person. So, for instance, for me, I Much prefer talking to strangers. If I’m in a room full of strangers, I’m not gonna say I don’t get nervous, but it is worse for me if somebody I know is in the audience. Yeah, I cannot stand well.

Josh:

I would feel more comfortable if I had some people who I knew and most of my clients do, and Again, I still get the excitement.

Marianna:

But if my husband is in the audience, I it freaks me out. I make sure I look everywhere except at him, and that’s my trigger is when I know someone in the audience. It’s I don’t know if you ever heard the saying, usually they say it about certain performers the safety of the stage. So to me, a room full of a hundred or more people that I don’t know, that’s my sweet spot. I just feel like LA. You know, the anxiety is not gripping me. I’m having fun, I love it. But as soon as someone I know is in the audience and especially if I see them looking at me, who I really need to dip into my toolbox of relaxation tools.

Josh:

So so first understanding what.

Marianna:

Who’s in the audience, what is it that trips you up, or the scenario, and then start addressing it.

Josh:

I wonder if that’s because if it’s people you don’t know and it doesn’t go well, it’s like, well, I’ll never see them again. So or if it is, you know, if it is somebody you know, it’s like, oh, they’re gonna remember that you know. That dud of a presentation I don’t know. I mean, I I kind of wonder what the psychology is behind there, because I could see both camps equally like. I understand where you’re at and it is funny. I don’t know that’s something that can be trained, but I I 100 feel opposite to where anytime I would be in a meeting, like, for example, if I was referred to a potential client and I met with their board of you know seven people or something, and and my client was there on my behalf. I would feel so much more confident and comfortable if I went there by myself. It would feel a little more Intimidating for me. It’s particularly earlier on. I did get more and more comfortable and I think for anyone feeling nervous, I’m sure you’d back me up and saying the more you do it, the easier it gets and you learn to manage the nerves and the butterflies differently. And I have some thoughts on what nerves are and how they actually can be a really good thing. But yeah, that’s fascinating. I just I don’t know. I don’t have any more thoughts than that. That is just really interesting. Right, both camps, could you know? I imagine you fall one one camp or the other.

Marianna:

It is yes and, like it’s really interesting to me, most of my clients, especially my corporate clients Almost 201 they say I am so nervous unless somebody I know is in the room, whereas I’m the opposite. So part of the battle is is understanding that. And, yes, you, you just said a minute ago, with something we were talking about before you hit record, is that Getting more and more practice, doing it more, this is a great way to Gain mastery over the nerves. When we get to, we’ll talk about the nerves, but I I don’t ever say get rid of the nerves, because that’s not realistic.

Josh:

So let’s do it. Let’s dive into the nerves. My insight on this and what I’ve experienced is that I still do have a feeling of like nervousness when I’m being interviewed or when I’m doing something, but what I have learned is that that’s often just means I’m excited, and I have learned, if I do something that is any sort of training or public speaking or live video or anything, if I don’t feel any sort of nerves, I feel Not like dead inside, but I feel like I’ve got bored with that, and that can actually be a bad thing in my experience. I think it’s actually good to feel some nerves, because it means you’re feeling alive in that moment and and there’s something exciting going on is is that is that kind of a perspective that you’ve had when it comes to nerves as well?

Marianna:

Absolutely and it is spot on. And, by the way, there’s been research done on this and everything you said is spot on. When, when you feel nerves and it, it manifests differently for everybody and we can talk about some of those, because I used to think I didn’t have symptoms. I just found out my symptoms were different than everyone else’s. But when you have the nerves, the excitement, the anxiety, whatever you want to call it, that is your body’s way of telling you I care about this and I want to do a good job. And, yes, if it gets so rote that you are Feeling bored when you go into it or you’re like, oh, this again, that that is a sign that you’re bored and either you need to shake up something in yourself or shake up something in the presentation, the activities, the, the words you say and and it’s good to pay attention to those things. You know, josh, most people, if they find that they’re not feeling nervous, they’re like, okay, I’m good, versus seeing it as kind of a signal that maybe you need to switch something up here, maybe something is stale or maybe you shouldn’t be doing this. Not you, josh, but I mean, you know, I’ve heard musicians talk about this and my feeling, josh I. I love to go see musicians and storytellers and plays if they’re not feeling even a little bit nervous. I don’t want to see them Because that tells me they don’t care or that they’ve mentally checked out.

Josh:

And it kind of reminds me of towards the tail end of running my web design business. I eventually sold it. One cue I didn’t really think about it until now but one cue that told me I was ready to pivot to teaching in the online Teaching world is I was never burned out by my business, but I was getting bored. I did get to the point where, like the sales meetings, I wasn’t nervous for them anymore, and it was a fact that it wasn’t because I was super confident as much as, like I was so much more interested in doing something else at this point. Um, so that is kind of an interesting red flag, I guess. Maybe, if you are feeling that to Maybe that’s time to pivot or do something, or Maybe change the stakes, like maybe, maybe do something new or what branch outside of your comfort zone, maybe host a live webinar or something, would you start? coaching business or a target. Yeah, do you encourage people to like do something bigger, doing something different, if they get to that point where you do get quote-unquote like bored yes, absolutely.

Marianna:

And uh, I do encourage them to do something different if they’re bored, to raise the stakes, and what I usually tell my clients is try something outside of your comfort zone. When coaching wraps up with me, one of the resources I give them afterwards is a list of storytelling shows across the united states and especially in the chicago area, because most of my clients have never tried storytelling or comedy before and that’s a great way to kind of shake up that muscle, learn a new skill and get some public speaking practice. So I’ve linked to where they can go to you know, find the show or sign up or apply to be a speaker. And it’s interesting you mentioned this because I am constantly stretching myself in my own speaking and training capabilities as well. I Whether it’s taking classes, learning new skills, working on new activities One thing I started doing Right about I don’t know year, year and a half ago it was always kind of like a secret dream was to try stand-up comedy. So I I did that. I took a few classes, I performed in a few shows, I have done open mics in chicago and I I will tell you this I almost don’t want to say this, but I know none of my clients will do this because they have flat out told me nope, if you can go to an open mic and tell a four-minute set of jokes, even if they fall flat, your aces I mean, doesn’t mean your anxiety will be killed, but boy it makes a corporate presentation Pale and and, mind you, this is friendly audiences, friendly audiences who are supportive, that even if you Don’t get a single laugh, they’ll be like whoo Yay, but I have offered that to my clients. Yeah, and they’re like nope.

Josh:

I have most respect for comedians. I mean I I can’t imagine a tougher medium like for communication, then Getting up all eyes on you, because it is one thing when you share what you know, or like in the case of angie and mike, my students who are about to have these presentations. In a way, they each have services that are going to help the people they’re talking to, right, but in the comedy club, like they’re, those people are just there to laugh, like it is really. There’s so much that rides on your shoulders and it is a little bit more personal and I totally agree. So I feel like that is, if you really want to master work presentations, yeah, do an open mic. That I guess, but that idea of it being on our shoulders One thing that helped me when I kind of broke that mold because I was a terrible public speaker, my voice changed. I was trembling. I would literally I was the best man on a wedding and I was shaking. I literally had a piece of paper and it was like, like you hear in the mic while I was trying to read and talk. I was so nervous. The one thing I noticed in sales is what made me more confident and comfortable is that it’s not about me at all. I’m like the conduit for their solution and that really helped make it not personal for me and just Hear what I know and help them, and that really alleviated my sense of nerves from. From that I mean I guess let’s take a deep dive on how to alleviate some of these nerves. What is that a tip that you recommend? Are there any other tips to help the nerves?

Marianna:

Absolutely. In fact, I made a list of three to share with you today. All right, rule of threes, rule in comedy, rule in public speaking rule, rule of my business. So First thing I would say is kind of something you and I already touched on, but I I kind of can’t overemphasize this enough the first thing to do is to accept that, if this means something to you, if you care, there is going to be a little anxiety, nerves, excitement, whatever you want to call it, and the two things that won’t work are number one, trying to get rid of that sensation, and number two, trying to um Pridify it up. So one thing and you know I’ve used this word we say excitement and, yes, excitement and nerves actually have the same Physical symptoms. So it’s okay to go, okay, I’m excited. But if you try to convince yourself that no, no, no, this is good, this is good, this is good, I, I’m excited and I love this, it’s kind of like doing affirmations that don’t work. You know, if you don’t believe that this is really excitement, or you don’t believe that this is a good force that you can channel, it’s not going to work. So why not accept that? This is just a natural part of being. And this is what happens when we care about something right, we get. We get the nerves, we get the excitement. And I’m very careful about saying accepting it versus embracing it. I feel like we’re often told to embrace it and go ahead and embrace it if that does feel good. But I feel like the word embrace has this connotation that means I have to put my arms around it and love it. You don’t have to love it. Accepting doesn’t mean liking it. It just means knowing that this is a thing. And here’s one more thing I want to like really underscore about this point the reason why we can never get rid of nerves or anxiety. Let’s just call it anxiety for this example. Anxiety is a natural human emotion, granted, not the most pleasant one, right. We prefer things like love or laughter or humor, right. But when I have a client or even my students at Loyola come to me all the time and say I want to get rid of my nerves, I had one student in one of my public speaking classes, probably two or three semesters ago. We do goal setting at the beginning of the semester and I asked everyone to share their goals and this young guy man. He was so enthusiastic I love the enthusiasm but he stood up and he said I’m gonna get rid of my nervousness around public speaking. That’s my goal for the whole semester. So when I’m done, I want to be able to give a speech and not be nervous at all, and I let him know okay, let’s, let’s tweak that goal, let’s turn the wrench on it. You can’t, because when you say I want to get completely rid of my anxiety, you may as well say something like you know what I want to get rid of love. I want to get rid of love. I hate this feeling, so I’m getting rid of love. You can’t. These are human emotions that are built into us. What we can do Is manage it and make sure it doesn’t hijack our brain. That’s the goal.

Josh:

I love that. I was a part of a toast masters group for about a year and one of my first times there Uh, they said that and it made me feel so much better because, number one, I felt like I was Not cut out for public speaking or any sort of speaking. Well, before I even started a podcast, because I felt those nerves. So I I felt like when I saw a confident speaker, well, surely they’re not nervous Like they’ve, just, they’re a pro at this. They probably love this, whereas it’s terrifying to me. So I think that’s a really, really important point for anyone and when it comes to a sales meeting for, like, web design or whatever, it is a great reminder that this is natural, like you should feel this, especially, like we’ve already established, if it’s important, if you’re excited and if there’s something on the line. So the trick to to managing those, I know one of the tips I took away from toast masters was that you can take at least their perspective, and what I adopted is that you can take nerves and those anxious butterfly feelings and use them for excitement, energy, because the the other thing that happens is I think some people I would imagine you’ve seen this is they try to overcompensate for nervousness by being dull. So they’re like okay, hey, slow, I would like to help you with your website. You know it’s like robot. Right, and you don’t want to do that either, so uh. I do have any tips for using the nerves practically. Yes, yeah, is it good? Hand gestures, voice inflection, sure.

Marianna:

Should somebody do some?

Josh:

pushups when they go to the meeting. What should we do?

Marianna:

You can. I’m going to come to the tactical things, the actual physical things we can do. I want to circle back to something you said, but I want to first just piggyback off of that wonderful example you gave about. When people they feel nervous, right, and one of the symptoms that many people have is the thoughts you’re racing up here, the heart is racing, so they might overcompensate by slowing down more, and here’s why that doesn’t work. Here’s why they’re doing it and here’s why it doesn’t work. When we get that rush of adrenaline, which all of us get okay, myself, adele, has crippling stage fright. I don’t know if you know that, barbara.

Josh:

Streisand does.

Marianna:

Yeah, yeah, barbara Streisand talked to it’s a known fact among performers, but she talked to James Corden about this while they were doing carpool karaoke and I have a link to it in the resources as I give my clients. But what happens in that moment when we are feeling those nerves, whether it’s the, you know, rush of blood to the head, the spinning thoughts that is adrenaline. And the problem with adrenaline is it comes from I forgot the scientific name, but there’s this tiny part in the center of our brain that’s called the lizard brain and that is the one part of our brain that never evolved. So anything that feels a little bit scary, the lizard brain still thinks oh, we have to run from a lion and go catch our dinner right Now. Here’s the problem with adrenaline. It’s good because it gives us energy, but because it doesn’t regulate, everything seems faster, everything feels faster. Up here, those of us listening on the podcast, I’m pointing to my brain, my head, my forehead, I’m pointing to the top of my head, and it kind of it’s a liar Things feel like they’re going faster than they are. Where I usually see this Josh is a client will get up and do a wonderful introduction and they sit down. We do feedback. I’ll say how did the introduction feel? Oh, my gosh, I raced through it. No, you didn’t. You sounded great. Because everything, when we’re having that adrenaline rush, everything feels faster than it really is and everything, unfortunately, also feels worse than it really is. So, so it distorts time. So when we try to overcompensate by slowing down, or sometimes they’ll even try and quiet their voice because they’re afraid that they’re getting like this and speeding up that. it’s counter, counterproductive, right? Because now, instead of letting our energy and enthusiasm come through, they’re getting this kind of edited version of us that isn’t that wonderful designer or that wonderful speaker that we want to work with, who can solve our problem. So you’re really, when you try to overcompensate I understand why it’s a natural human reaction to something like that, but you’re really robbing the world of the best version of you.

Josh:

So where’s the balance there? Because I, on the opposite side of that, I have, especially in the early days, when I would present, when I’d be in front of people, I would talk a million miles a minute sometimes because I was nervous and I wouldn’t take time to pause, take a breath and it wasn’t natural sounding because I was nervous. And I’m sure we’ve all been there or seen presentations where somebody is like hello, hello, hello and it’s like well, slow down. But yes, your point that you can tell when someone’s overcompensating to. Funny side note, I come from a musician past and I remember live shows, big live shows, where I was super amped up. I felt like the click track, the metronome that was going for our songs, was so slow because I was so amped up. But yeah that didn’t, that didn’t lie. That was the right tempo of the song, but it just felt slower because we were in front of 1000 people or something. So it’s so similar to public speaking. But yeah, where’s that? You know, healthy balance.

Marianna:

Sure. So a couple of things to tie to, and then we can talk some brass tacks, if you’d like. So the first step is being aware of how your anxiety manifests. Is it that racing thoughts? Is it the? I think I’m talking too fast. Is it the heart racing? Some people have more outwardly physical symptoms, like like the hands shaking, or maybe they just they sweat more. Not a real attractive thing to talk about, but some minor, like all the above as I’m thinking about.

Josh:

Yes, some people have multiple yeah.

Marianna:

Now it’s interesting mine, because I’ve been doing this a long time. I have a theater background. Very first play I was in I was five years old and so I love being in front of people and speaking or presenting or acting, and I always thought I don’t get nervous. Well, I did. I just didn’t have the symptoms everyone else did, Mine. It’s a little embarrassing Because I know you said like let’s, let’s keep this all PG 13. My thoughts race before the presentation or before the story that I go up to tell, and not only do they race, they then come out in a very BITC. Oh, we can say it’s totally fine, Okay, good.

Josh:

We’re hard. We’re hard. Pg 13 on this show. Well, yeah, Okay good.

Marianna:

Good, so, yeah, so I would get really bitchy. I mean, I’m talking about dumb things Another time. This is yeah, this was like I just hear. Can I share a bit on the bitchy thing?

Josh:

Yes, yes yes, we played with this, with this band and this, this singer of this other band. She was like super, super nervous and she talked to the singer of my band who was. It was a pretty pro at it and he was like you just got to go out there and be confident, just tell the crowd what to do. And she came across like the biggest bitch I’ve ever ever and I felt so back because she’s actually like the sweetest person. But she went up there and over compensated and was like get your freaking hands in the air, like it was just did not come across, but it was because of those nerves yeah that’s an overcompensation, Josh.

Marianna:

I’m going to write a whole blog about this.

Josh:

You’re at this is such a great conversation. Give me the transcript so we can. Yeah, you can use it.

Marianna:

I would love that and I’m going to link. I’m going to put the episode out anyway, but I’m going to link to this too. But yeah, it’s so funny. Yeah, the overcompensating. But the way my bitchy nose comes out when I get nervous is I obsess over the dumbest little things that seem important in the moment. So my example is there was, I was doing a storytelling at a show that I loved, but I had never been a performer at the show before and it was not that far from my house. So my husband and I were walking there and it was summer, I had sandals on, I had had a pedicure, who knows. When we walked out of the house and I had been thinking for like 10 minutes about what my toenail polish looked like on my big toes, we got out of the house and I went. I can’t do this, I have to fix my toenail polish, because I saw a chip and I thought everybody was going to see my toenail polish chip. I went back upstairs, fixed, got whatever nail polish I had there, repainted my two big toes and then we went and after the show was over I just, you know, thought I looked at my toes and went nobody was looking at your toes. But that’s where. That’s how my nerves manifest is. I get obsessive and bitchy about stupid, stupid things.

Josh:

Gotcha.

Marianna:

Now I can. I know that’s the symptom, so I recognize it. So if I’m leaving for a client meeting or going to present at a conference and I notice I’m obsessing over which pencil is in my purse, I stop and I go Okay, here it is. Do you really need a different pencil in your purse? Or whatever it is, but just just that simple act of acknowledging it and going, ah, this is what it is, that allows me to stop and it kind of grounds me, puts me back in the moment and I find, if you have a phrase to acknowledge it, that works for you. I had a colleague years ago but when she found her thoughts were spinning, she would go here’s my crazy, and not pejoratively, but that was her way of recognizing it and stopping it. So be able to know your symptoms, recognize them and and I don’t mean just think about it and keep doing what you’re doing you need to stop and, if it helps you, to verbalize, but you need to say something, whether it’s in your mind or out loud, like Okay, here’s my thing, because if we just kind of think about it for a sec, we’re just going to keep going back to our symptoms, whatever it is we do.

Josh:

Gotcha and when it comes. So it’s interesting that yours kind of manifests like maybe before or after the actual event of speaking you’re presenting, for the people who, like myself, who it’s 100% in the moment where those come out. I know we had talked about maybe getting into some of the nitty gritty. I’m like what to do with those nerve. I like your term on like accepting it, not necessarily loving it or embracing it. But now the question is, if I’m a web designer and I’m in a presentation in front of a group and I’ve got all this, you know, select all the symptoms I’m sweaty, I’m nervous, my voice is changing, I’m talking really fast. I don’t want to talk too slow. What’s some of the best places to just like start with with being yourself? You know, while you’re talking, by the way, I’m going to let my golden retriever in real quick. She scratched at the door. But keep talking, we’re going to keep rolling.

Marianna:

Absolutely All right, so while Josh grabs his golden retriever. So there’s a couple of things. First step we’ve got acknowledging and noticing what’s going on. Second thing is to have the tools ready to go, and I’m going to give you those tools. But, josh, I’m really hammering this because it’s this is why I give my clients and my workshop students practice, Because if I can say to you, josh, take a deep breath when you get nervous, okay, if you don’t practice it or you don’t know your method and you don’t have it ready to go before you step out there, you’re not going to do it. When you have that rush of adrenaline or you notice you’re getting a little caught up in your thoughts or spinning. So, I will give you examples of some things I like. And here’s the other thing when it comes to tools, we might not like the anxiety, but you do need to like the thing you’re using. So the one I like to do there’s two things that kind of always slow me down and reconnect me, and these are my things. So the first one is I like to ground myself with my root chakra. Very woo woo I know, but I meditate in the morning before I start work, like for a minute or so, and the way I do it is I, you know, sit, I close my eyes, I have colors I think of, but I tell myself to breathe into my root chakra. So that’s the part it’s kind of like between your hips, it’s the very, you know base of where you sit. And great, I’m not asking you to meditate when you’re out there presenting to your clients or at a conference, but what I do then is I kind of make a mini version of it and, for instance, now when you and I are talking, when it’s your turn to speak, it gives me a second to pause. But I also say to myself okay, ground to your root chakra and my energy just, rather than being all up here spinning in my head, it grounds down very nice. I kind of feel calm at my base. So even if I’m presenting at a conference and I feel I’m getting a little spun up, I’ll just say ground to your root chakra, and that kind of mental cue slows me down. Another one that I think anybody can do and you don’t have to have a big meditation practice but I learned this from one of my business partners, jeremy Cohn, who teaches Alexander technique is when you find you’re just kind of spinning or feel like you’re losing control of it, just ask yourself up here in your head, where are my feet? So, josh, please do that for me. Ask yourself for our purposes. Go ahead and verbalize it. Say that for me, please.

Josh:

So where are my feet, or am?

Marianna:

I actually telling you where my feet are. No, no, no. I just want you to say where are my feet. So what happens when you say that? What did you notice was happening in your mind?

Josh:

Oh well, I definitely I thought about it. It did actually kind of center me in, like it made me a little more I’m trying to think about was nervous. It like forced me to think about one thing and in a way it calmed me down, I guess, because it was like everything else was where are my feet? It was like it was me, it was 100% me. It wasn’t a, it wasn’t a nervous me. It’s like where are my feet?

Marianna:

Right. It directs your attention and it brings your attention down right. So I love that question, that little quick question in the moment, because when you are presenting and your thoughts start spinning, you can just mentally. Mentally, because if you’re in front of your clients or a conference audience you shouldn’t go. So what I was saying, where are my feet? You know that’ll look weird, but that’s why I like having these mental tricks because you can do them and nobody knows them. So those are my two favorites the reminding myself to get to my root chakra and in a moment of feeling maybe spinning out of control or another time, what happens to a lot of people? When the anxiety comes up, they forget their thought. Or they forget their next sentence where are my feet? And when we relax the mind, the next thought will come.

Josh:

Mm, yeah, that’s good. I would love to talk about the difference between small groups and larger groups, because Sure, especially when it comes to showing energy and being more charismatic and everything I have. Really one of the reasons I love podcasts is because if you and I were at a coffee shop talking, it would be the exact same like I don’t, shay, and actually it’s funny. I was just at a web design conference with a lot of my community and a couple of the people said like you’re, just like you are in your podcast in person which makes me sad for the amount of people who broadcast themselves differently than they actually are. Right, right but this is not a show like I communicate and have tried to always do this and have learned to do better at this just like I would on camera and a meeting or whatever. Then in person, just as a one-on-one, and that’s, I think, easier to do in like a small group setting when it’s a little more back and forth than Q&A style, but in a larger group in like a 20 minute presentation or something. Anytime I’m involved with something. I don’t do much public speaking in person, but I do a lot of like online trainings and I do try to just find like the next level up, like the excited version of myself is what I try to find, just to try to make it engaging, whereas one-on-one I might be a little more subdued. Can you speak to how to maybe manage that difference as far as like, or should there not be a difference between how in your mind, how you speak to 50 people versus a small group? Or do you feel like it’s maybe good to find the best version of like the excited version of you for a bigger audience? Oh, there’s so much there, so a weird question. But yeah, no, no, no, it’s a great question.

Marianna:

Let me kind of start with like what I think is true and the foundation of everything, and then let’s talk about how you show up differently for an audience of five versus an audience of 20. And I love, Josh, your phrase the most excited version of myself or the more excited version of myself. I’m gonna think about that and use that, but okay, pulling back all the way at the end of the day, whether it’s me pitching my business to one other person or speaking to a room full of people at a conference, or doing my group workshops, which I cap at 10 or 20, so people can have I’m sorry, 10 or 12. So everyone gets practice.

Josh:

Gotcha.

Marianna:

At the end of the day, anytime we’re sharing information or exchanging information. Yes, it might be a presentation, but it’s always a conversation, so I like to approach any presenting or speaking opportunity as this is a conversation.

Josh:

Even in a big group setting, like in a one to many.

Marianna:

Yes, and even in one to many. It’s just you are doing that conversation on a different scale.

Josh:

Gotcha.

Marianna:

Now, like I said, I love your more excited version of myself. It is good to. What’s the word I’m looking for? Not measure, but calibrate the stuff so that it’s appropriate for the room. So, for instance, if you do sit down with five people to talk about your coaching program, you’re not gonna come and be like, hey, everybody, you might, but it might be a bit much for that small of a group, right?

Josh:

Yeah right.

Marianna:

Conversely, when I have 20 or 100 people in the room, I don’t have them do the activities we do in a small workshop of 10 people, because then we’re gonna be there to like six o’clock the next morning, right, so you have to calibrate and scale appropriately. What I would say, though, with regards to the energy you bring or the things you do, is know what’s going to make you comfortable. You still wanna be a good speaker, be a good presenter and prepare appropriately, but how can you connect to that group? So, for instance, let’s go back to my conference example. When I have a small workshop of 10 or 12 people, we do an icebreaker and we’ll share some bit of information about ourselves. I can’t do that with a room full of 20, 50, 100, 1,000. However, I like to know a little something about them, so I might do a raise your hand survey if we’re on Zoom we use the polls and when we have that information, then you know I can say oh, I see most of you say you have used this product before. Great, here’s what I’m gonna touch on, so anything you can do to make it more of a conversation. You know, these days it’s really cool because we have all these tools. We have polling tools. We’ve got online polling that we can use at conferences. One of my favorite low tech items that I just discovered this year did you know you can buy paddles for groups that are dry erase paddles?

Josh:

No no.

Marianna:

Yeah, I was in a retreat that I was at in April. It was virtual, but we received a package of goodies before the retreat started and my coach sent us dry erase paddles and dry erase markers so we could write reactions If we loved something. She was saying we could draw a star, put a gold circle on it and pull it up. So there’s so many ways that we can get to know our audience and make it more comfortable for ourselves. But to your point about you. Know how much enthusiasm do you let through, let it all through, let them see the best version of you, but know that you wanna, you know, scale it appropriately For five people. You’re not gonna be Tony Robbins level. Let out your lions roar whatever he does. He’s not my favorite.

Josh:

Yeah, yeah, because then the point you were gonna be like, whoa, Tony, chill out, man, we’re in a coffee shop.

Marianna:

Exactly exactly, you know. I’ll give you an example. Actually years ago, when I used to do bank training, decades ago, there were always supposed to be 10 or 12 people in the room and they were learning a new system. So they would have a computer and I would stand at the front of the room and, you know, teach everyone how to use the system. Well, one day only two people showed up. Everyone else had changed to a different time slot. So what I did was I asked the two women who were there to sit at their computers. I pulled up a chair, sat between them, and you know it was great, because I could give them more personalized attention, but I wasn’t my usual. Hey, everybody, you know, stand up and say your favorite movie, because it was. That would have been silly for two people. And I never forgot that session because it was so much fun. We learned a lot. We learned about each other. They learned what my favorite Indian candy was, so they actually went out at lunch and brought back a bag for all of us to share. It was so much fun. But it’s. You know, how can you make this more of a conversation, even on a large scale, and then bring the energy that’s appropriate?

Josh:

That’s a great, great tip, especially for the large groups to make it feel intimate in a way that is still with a large group, because it’s like you’re with them instead of speaking to them and speaking to them. I love that. So you mentioned something interesting there, which is preparedness. The examples that I’ve kind of hung onto here throughout this conversation with Angie, who is going into a board of people with like a prepared proposal and almost can have like more of a presentation style thing, versus Mike, who’s heading into a little more of a casual Q and A with a lot of people. One thing that Mike told me and I’m sure he’s cool with me sharing this live, because I think we all probably feel like this is if you go into a live Q and A and you’re not used to it, that can be extremely nerve-wracking because you don’t know what they’re gonna ask and I actually love that. Now I like whenever I’m on an interview, I don’t want to see questions beforehand. I’m much better with the first answer and I kind of like being surprised by questions, but that’s not the case for a lot of people and I understand that. So for somebody like Mike’s case, how would what were your recommendations to be to, I guess, manage the nerves of not know, like the unknown?

Marianna:

of what to ask. Sure, it’s exactly what you said preparedness. Now are you gonna know every question that people might ask you? No, I mean, I still got questions that surprise me. I think we always will, right Cause you can’t know what anyone’s thinking. You can think from the perspective of your audience. Okay, what might they wanna know? When I coach finance departments that are usually presenting up to the C-suite, I ask them to think about okay, what are their priorities? You know you’re talking to your financial lingo. They don’t know that financial lingo. This is their priorities. Let’s address that so you can think from that perspective. The other half of that, josh, is be prepared for when you don’t know and have the responses ready to go, and it’s always okay to say I don’t know. Tell me if you agree with this. This is something I’ve spoken about on podcasts or I discuss with clients. There is something about American work culture where we are supposed to be good at every single thing, including public speaking. We are supposed to always have the answer. We are supposed to know everything, even if something is in our area of expertise, and I feel like there is this incredible pressure to always have a response. What do you think?

Josh:

Yeah, I do agree with that, where that pressure comes from, where that originated. Whether we’re all just thinking that’s what we all think, I don’t know. But particularly in my industry of web design, clients for me would always ask me Like they would ask me they would just assume because I could build websites, I would know everything about Facebook and everything about social media, everything about SEO, everything about email. And I don’t. And one thing that I help a lot of my students with when it comes to imposter syndrome is to remind everybody no one knows everything. Like a lot of people know a lot about a little, but very little people know about a lot. Like you know what I mean. Yes, we don’t know everything. Great reminder that we should be prepared to say I don’t know, but I’ll look into it. Or I do know something similar that I could give some insight on. But that’s a great reminder. And I don’t know where that comes from. But you’re so right, for, like Mike’s case, the feeling of nervousness probably stems from the questions he might get that he doesn’t know. And then you don’t want to look like a an idiot who doesn’t know what they’re talking about. But the reality is like I know Mike knows plenty to share with them. So good reminder. Yeah, just I don’t know, but we’ll look yeah.

Marianna:

Yeah, I don’t know. I can look it up. I can get it back to you. I have seen that, though the answer your question.

Josh:

You’re right. Yeah, especially in web design. Yeah, whatever reason. Somebody’s like oh so you can fix my computer, you must do IT too. No, I don’t know. I don’t know how to fix your computer.

Marianna:

Right, I used to get that. When I started my career, I was a software trainer and pro tip. If you tell the kids at the Apple Genius Bar that you used to be a software trainer, they’re not impressed.

Josh:

Ah, gotcha.

Marianna:

So usually I’m always thinking and actually this is a good thing to bring up I’m always thinking that if I kind of let them know I used to be techie, they’ll be sympathetic. No, the opposite is true. So I’d like to throw to that point, josh, one of my favorite public speaking tips that I tell everybody if you are feeling unconfident, or you were pulled in last minute, or you had to step in, or this is only your first week at the company, don’t announce that stuff and apologize, because people will do that, don’t you know? Oh, kevin was supposed to present today but he’s sick. I guess you’re stuck with me. I only looked at this deck last night. People think if they kind of confess their, their nerves or their Inexperience to the audience, that the audience will be on their side. And it’s actually the opposite. It’s counterintuitive. But when you kind of expose how ill-prepared you are, the audience, right away their minds like okay, then why are you wasting my time?

Josh:

they don’t give you the sympathy you think you’re gonna get good boy this brings me just made me flash back to Web design conference. I went two years ago and the speaker said just that like he was really uncomfortable. And he just said I don’t usually do this thing, I’m really nervous. So you know, bear with me. And yeah, I did it like and kind of the way he came across just wasn’t, it wasn’t a likeable way. So it’s like, yeah, I feel bad. It’s like, yeah, we weren’t our side, you’re right. It’s like now I feel like I got a freaking sit here for 45 minutes and endure this.

Marianna:

I’d rather sneak out the back yeah it’s a good point. Well, and here let me give like a kind of a Other side of the coin reason why you shouldn’t do this. Yes, it doesn’t inspire confidence. Example from my own life probably the the first time I remember paying attention to this I was pretty young, before I was in training. It was in my 20s and and I was living in San Francisco at the time and there was a Dance fitness class. It was jazzercise. I always feel weird seeing jazzercise because I think that screams 80s, but it wasn’t way after the 80s. But it was a jazzercise class. I would go to Fridays after work. It was an awesome class and I really liked it. I like the teacher. And then one day I see my teacher kind of helping out some other woman and putting the headset on her and futzing with the music, and this new teacher comes to the front, says hi, I’m gonna teach today. I’m so nervous because this is my first time leading one of these classes. I Almost left because, I’m like, really, you’re giving me this inexperienced person. I was gonna grab my bag and leave. Well, josh, class happens. She was a better instructor than my regular instructor, she had better music, she had better dance moves. And I’m like, why did you say that You’re an awesome teacher and I, after I kept going? Because she was the teacher then and so there’s no need to call attention to your inexperience, your nerves, whatever, because why put a negative in your audience’s head? You know, you don’t know what they’re thinking of you, nor do you need to. You just need to put your best self out there. I feel like it’s cliche, but really I was like, why did you even say anything? This was an awesome class, she was better than my regular teacher.

Josh:

That is such a great point. You just he just said it. Why I forget how you worded a why call attention to your nervousness or why? Why put a negative thought in their head? It’s yeah, I love that. That message needs to be so loud and clear. Yeah, you don’t need to call it out. Well, yeah, why do that? And to your point, like I’m sure I was really nervous and some Presentations early on actually did really good and just yeah, I didn’t need to mention it to anybody. So for anyone feeling nervous, I love that yeah, don’t call attention to it, don’t make it worse than it is Right. Yeah, don’t pour gasoline on the fire.

Marianna:

Yeah, exactly, it’s all. You already got a fire going up here in your brain. That, as we know, is probably adrenaline and it’s probably lying to you.

Josh:

Yeah, such a good point. Yeah, a lot of a lot of this is Is is circling back to the fact that because kind of the topic of this I wanted to hit on was was nerves and what to do with these nerves a lot of this just keeps circling back to the fact that nerves are there. We should expect them. It’s not a bad thing, and in fact, it could be a really good thing and we’ve talked about a lot of tips to Mitigate these and manage these and use them to our advantage different group settings, small group versus big groups, sales Presentation versus training and everything else. Mm-hmm, is there anything else Glaring that we maybe haven’t talked to when it comes to nerves? Is there something that you just love helping people out with when it comes to nerves?

Marianna:

Sure, two, two things I want to say. So I gave you the example of the two things I like to do when I need to just kind of ground myself in the moment. But I encourage your listeners to find what works for them. I, in the workshops I teach depending on the workshop I still see teach some breathing exercises. But I’ll never forget, I had this one workshop, corporate workshop, and we did some breathing exercises and I said, okay, you know, so this is what you can do before your next meeting or your next presentation. Just, you know, before you walk in the room, try this. And Someone in the room was just kind of exasperated like Mariana, I’m not gonna go In front of my boss. I’m like well, I’m not saying you, do it in front of your boss. You know you, you can go into the bathroom, lock yourself in a stall. But if that doesn’t work for you. Find something else. Like where are my feet? I’ve taught breathing exercises that you really can’t notice people doing, so you know there’s something called four, seven, eight breathing, which sorry for those of you listening to the podcast. But, josh, I’m gonna illustrate it now and tell me if you notice anything about me.

Josh:

Now it looks like you’re just listening to me.

Marianna:

Right. Yeah right, there’s breathing exercises, where nobody knows you’re doing a breathing exercise. So, so find what works for you. Are you a fan of the office?

Josh:

Yes, I will listen to like the heaviest stuff I have before. I’m feeling, if I’m feeling those nerves like I used to, yeah, I would literally like it was. Yeah, it was loud, it was heavy and that was like I wasn’t the like. I need to center myself Again, probably just a little opposite, which just says that you and I, I think, are good at communication but we have opposite Feelings of nerves and techniques and the way we go about it. So it’s like it works for everybody Whatever works for you. Yeah, you’re right, I 100% was Dwight. I I did not need the calm center, I did not need to calm my mind, I needed like some, some heavy stuff to like help me almost get that out a little bit. Yeah, yeah and I was a metal drummer, so maybe that’s wired in me to, you know to to be nervous and just want. But yeah, that’s what kind of centered me it was. It was it nice down first, it was like me going for it and that’s what caught me right.

Marianna:

Yeah, and I think that’s you know. You bring up a good Point, an example. I also have some of my more active things, but I need to be in a room by myself, like Because I’m not gonna do the Dwight thing in front of my.

Josh:

Yeah, if anyone hasn’t seen that in the office Dwight has to before sales, meaning has to sit in a car, crank some heavy stuff and just like hit the seat.

Marianna:

Heavy that already does these punches, yeah. So, yes, find what works for you. And I love that you brought that up, josh, because I think another kind of thing in, I think, just American society in general is that if you want to calm down, you know you have to meditate, you have to breathe. When I say meditate, I don’t meditate very long because I’m a very I guess the generic term is type a but I’m very active, very go-go-go, meditating for 15 minutes, forget it ain’t gonna happen, but you know. So I find the tiny breathing exercises that work for me. You don’t like breathing exercises, listen to heavy metal and thrash it out somewhere, so so find what works for you. So that’s the first thing. The second, and we touched on this earlier, but I can’t hammer this enough find opportunities to speak and present. Do a storytelling, take an improv class, take a stand-up comedy class. If you’re in a professional Organization, ask if you can lead a meeting, or maybe do a quick lunch and learn. Or my other business partner, randy Ford. He was in a networking group where I think once or twice a month they would have like it was called something like a ten minute minute, where Someone each month would like present ten minutes where they do my group yeah, game.

Josh:

Okay, you know what I’m talking about.

Marianna:

Yes, so you know, ask for opportunities to present. If you have a full-time job, ask someone you work with. You know, hey, can I teach a little tip at that meeting? Or would you like me to run next week stand-up meeting? There’s always opportunities and people will be really happy to have you. And You’re building that skill. You’re building your speaking. The more you do it, the less the anxiety will will hijack you or hijack your brain. Yeah, and like I said before, you’re raising your visibility and raising your leadership skills. So you know do it more.

Josh:

That’s what I, yeah, and I would say too, like Just practice it. If it is a training or a workshop, like I remember when I did my Presentations for my networking group, yeah, like every two months or three months we would do a little ten, fifty minute training and I would try to come and prepare it. I would make sure I had the slides and I would do a practice run with with my golden retriever as she’s watching me and, yeah, I just no way. At least I knew the material and was was familiar with where things were headed, and that made the world a difference early on, especially when I wasn’t Comfortable and confident with eyes on me, which, for again, for whatever reason, was just the. The killer for me was seeing eyes, looking at me, and it was like now, every word I say is being listened to and I don’t want to waste anyone’s time and I’m feeling nervous, but. But it was different when I was like at a table with people, and I think that what you said earlier with a bigger Group was interesting, is like being with them in some way, getting them involved. I can’t recommend enough to for everyone to think of a way like, if you’re in a meeting. You’re, you’re with those people. You’re not talking at them or to them, you’re with them, you want to help, right. That just alleviates so much pressure Unneeded pressure in a lot of ways, just like the the instructor you talked about the Jazzercise stuff it’s like it’s unneeded pressure for her to say like I’m super nervous my first time. No, just no, just do it.

Marianna:

Right.

Josh:

Yeah.

Marianna:

I mean, might even surprise yourself. You know that you get through it. You’re like wow, that was really awesome.

Josh:

Yeah, I was pretty dang good at that. All right, then, you’re really confident. Yeah, love it. Well, great tips. Do you go? Do you say is it Mariana or Mariana? I?

Marianna:

Either one is acceptable. Just get the a on the end. It’s not Mary Ann and you didn’t call me Mary Ann, but I have so many people who do that and I’m like People call me John.

Josh:

Recently it’s not even my name. I’m like why is everyone calling?

Marianna:

me.

Josh:

John, it was my email signature messed up, I don’t know, but yeah, I wanted to make sure I got that right. So, yeah, mary Anna, this was great, my gosh, a lot of good tips here, managing nerves again really timely. They’re. One of the reasons apart from needing to get caught up on episodes is I have some students who are in a few weeks Are going into these higher stakes type of situations, so I’m gonna get this out immediately, because this is something in a web design that is Not usually talked about. It’s like you could build a good website and you can build your business, but when it comes to sales, usually it’s like well, by the way you’re presented. You know 10 people and it’s like whoa, I wasn’t ready for this. So I love doing these conversations just to reiterate how important it is to To speak on small groups. Bigger groups feel confident, feel comfortable and I know it’s again. These nerves, these feelings are normal and Expected and many times good. So I don’t know any final thoughts, any any Absolutely last minute motive. Mary Anna, motivation hit us for them, yeah.

Marianna:

I’m gonna rip that one off too. I can’t wait to see this episode in the transcript. Yeah, I just want to underscore Accept that it might feel a little wonky, but it’s okay. Just just accepting doesn’t mean you have to love it, but except that it’s a part of you, accept that it means you care and you want to do well. And if I could challenge everyone listening to this episode Find one thing, speaking wise, to do differently. Go, go do a storytelling, try a stand-up comedy class, ask someone at your work or maybe a client site, if you can present or do a 15-minute lunch and learn or teach someone a skill. The more you do it, the easier it becomes. And it really does. It’s not and I want to be clear, josh not effortless. I don’t think this should be effortless. I love public speaking but, boy, I work my butt off for every workshop, every class, every conference appearance, every panel because I love it. But it does get easier than where you do it. So embrace that it might not always feel great, but ask for opportunities to do it more.

Josh:

Love it, absolutely love it. Are you familiar? I was going to stop recording and mention this, but we’ll just keep it going. Are you familiar with the theories on why public speaking feels so scary? Have you ever seen any of the research or theories on that?

Marianna:

No, All I know is the one I shared with you that your lizard brain hasn’t developed, so it still thinks you’re being threatened. But yeah, tell me what you found.

Josh:

Some of the theories that I’ve heard on that is that in tribal societies and small groups, the only time you would talk to a group is when you did something wrong or you were in trouble. So we’re wired to when 100 people are looking at us like, uh-oh, what did I do? Or I did something wrong, which was really interesting, because I know some people are better, maybe naturally, at speaking in groups than others, although I’m sure that nerves are similar. But there are people who are terrified. The question I always had for myself was like, why am I so afraid of this? I don’t know. It’s kind of interesting. I don’t know the research behind it, the science behind that, but it makes a whole lot of sense that, if we were, the only time we would speak to a group is if we were threatened or in trouble or our life is on the line. No wonder we feel those feelings.

Marianna:

Of course.

Josh:

The lizard brain, like I said.

Marianna:

That makes a lot of sense because when you were talking about getting called before a council tribunals I think were a thing in some societies when you were describing it, what I was going to say is it’s kind of like your dog hates the car, because the only time they get in the car is when you take them to the vet. So they know that if car means somebody is going to stick a needle in me or something, that actually makes a lot of sense to me Because I think, if we all think about it when you were describing that, Josh, the other thing that came up for me was once I got out of college and started having office jobs, whenever my boss would say no matter who the boss was, if they would say can I talk to you for a second or close the door my first thought was I’m getting fired. Yeah, because anytime someone of authority wanted to talk to me or told me to close the door, it was because I was in trouble. So, of course, if my boss wants to talk to me and half the time it was no, they were just sharing confidential information that the other people out in our cube area couldn’t hear. But I didn’t know that. I always thought I was getting fired, so there’s something to that.

Josh:

Yeah Well, if anyone knows, make sure to post a comment where this episode is at, because I would love to see the research behind her so I don’t have to do that.

Marianna:

Yes, please do.

Josh:

Yeah.

Marianna:

I love it.

Josh:

Well, thank you so much for your time today, mary-anne. This was great. I know this is going to help a lot of people. So, yeah, thank you for all you do, and maybe I’ll catch you at a comedy show next time we’re in Chicago.

Marianna:

I hope so. Thanks for having me, Josh. This was a blast. So there we are friends.

Josh:

So much goodness when it comes to presenting, speaking, communicating, no matter what their group size is. I know I’m not alone and feeling the dread of any sort of public speaking. I really do want to reiterate just a couple important things, though, and that is based off of everything that we talked about Practice. While it may not make perfect, it definitely makes things better. The more you do these meetings, I promise you, the more confident and comfortable you will be, and just remember the feelings of nervousness and anxiousness that you feel. They are again expected and they’re fine. You should feel like that if you’re excited. So that was my biggest takeaway from this conversation was just that getting over nerves is not getting rid of nerves, it’s managing the nerves. So I hope, if anything, that little tip right there puts a cap on this conversation, which I hope you enjoyed. If you did enjoy it, please let us know you can go to joshallco. Please let us know you can go to joshallco. Slash two, eight, three to drop a comment on here. I would love to hear from you on how this helps you out. I do read all the comments that come into the podcast, so let let me know. Joshallco slash, two, eight, three, again, you can connect with Mariana at marianaswallowcom and you know what? It’s probably a good time to mention that if you like the podcast, please leave us a review. You can do that idea on Apple or on Spotify to make it easy. Go to joshallco slash podcast review to do just that. It really means the world to me to hear your thoughts on how the show is helping you and your business, and probably I think everyone knows this by now. But reviews really do go a long way. So if you would leave a review, it would mean the world to me. I am shaking my hands in like a monk prayer type handshake right now, saying it would really mean the world to me if you left a review. So please do that after this and until next time. See you on the next episode, friends, and good luck. You don’t need luck at your next presentation, you just need this episode. So go break up speaking like oh gosh, it’s getting bad. All right, see you on the next one.

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