The majority of people fear public speaking even more than death.
It’s a major point of anxiety for me, so I created a series of posts on this topic. This post is the last in this series – you can check out the other two here:
- Anxiety in Introducing Yourself: The Simple Trick I use to Overcome It
- How to Calm Anxiety Before Public Speaking
Once upon a time, I could chat up strangers with no problem. During my 10 years in the service industry, I could talk to anyone.
Nowadays I get nervous introducing myself to people. I fumble my words trying to explain my business. It’s funny (or sad) to think that I had more confidence with major restaurant names backing me up than I do now that I’m self-employed.
But in the times that I do rock my introductions – and it does happen sometimes! – I’ve noticed two constants, one of which is a trick I picked up from my waitressing days.
My most frequently used confidence trick comes from my college days as a Ruby Tuesday’s server. Seven years ago I became friends with a wonderful Cuban gal named Milly. She was bold and exuded confidence, and although we were stuck wearing all black uniforms, she stood out every day with a colorful flower in her hair.
A sucker for colorful things, I totally started copying Milly. I’ve been wearing flowers in my hair ever since and feel naked without one.
The point back then (aside from having super pretty hair) was for our customers to remember us, to stand out from the standard-uniformed guys and gals.
Now, I use this personal flair as something that people can identify me with. I get nervous teaching essential oils classes but putting a pretty flower in my hair before I leave the house acts as a confidence booster. It helps me relax. When I’m presenting, I feel like it tells people there is more to me than a gal trying to sell you something.
Flowers also work as confidence boosters before networking events. If my voice shakes and my shyness prevents me from sounding as confident and enthusiastic as I am deep down, my hair flower is my backup. People remember the flower. They know there’s more color to my shy personality.
Examples of personal flair
Personal flair doesn’t have to be as obvious as a hair flower (though they are fun and inexpensive!). Maybe you have a simple bracelet, a charm, even a rock in your pocket that you have with you at all times. I personally like the visible flair though that helps people identify you.
Bring out the Best
The other thing I notice about my introductions is that I’m more confident when I’m talking about my biggest passions. When I talk to people about this blog, I chat passionately and naturally. I have no problem telling people about Naturally Ever After because it means so much to me.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m incredibly passionate about blogging for others and freelance writing as well. But that’s also my way of making a living. While I love it, it’s still more uniform than writing for myself.
This blog, however, serves my purpose of helping others overcome tough things like body shame, eating disorders and anxiety. It’s for other people, not just me.
The lesson here is to work your passion into your speech, speal, conversation, etc. For example, with my freelance writing, I know I’ll be more confident if I share up front how much I enjoy learning about other businesses and sharing their stories. That’s the part that really lights me up.
Whether you hate or love what you do, find an element of your job that excites you and let that part drive your introduction. And maybe you don’t talk about your work at all – hey, not everyone is defined by their occupation! Open your introduction by telling people about your volunteer work, your biggest passion project or the Guinness World Record you’re aiming to break!
Peppermint and Citrus Oils
Of course, essential oils work wonderfully as confidence boosters too!
Peppermint oil is known for that natural energy boost. With a little extra pep in your step and alert senses, you’ll have more enthusiasm and excitement in the way you present yourself.
Citrus oils, like Wild Orange or Tangerine, are known for their uplifting properties as well. These scents blended with Peppermint oil make for an amazing encouraging blend.
Blend these oils together in your own roller bottle and top it off with fractionated coconut oil so it doesn’t irritate your skin. (Or you can shoot me an email to see how you can get this awesome blend.) Rub the blend on your neck or shirt collar for a confidence boost before it’s your turn to speak.
Which Confidence Boosters Will You Try?
Speaking up in front of a group, public speeches, even the simple introduction to a stranger – these things don’t have to be scary. In fact, they’re our way of reaching people. See it as a positive!
But if those nerves and anxious thoughts creep up, arm yourself with natural confidence boosters. Remember to find an angle you’re passionate about, oil up, and find your own personal flair. If nothing else, the placebo effect from any confidence trick you implement can be powerful.
Do you have any tricks you use as confidence boosters? Do you have some kind of personal flair or lucky charm? I’m dying to know! Tell me all about it in the comments or join the discussion over on my Facebook Page.
Join Me on a Naturally Ever After Lifestyle
Learn to nourish the mind, body and heart naturally! I'll email you only once a month with my favorite tips, tricks and inspiration.