The authenticity of presentations

publication date 04.04.2014

Internal dialogue - authentic speech

Sometimes everyone can be in a situation, when he or she must face for some reason an audience, small or big group of people, who is waiting meantime patiently for our speech. It can be just horror or nice meeting. These occasions can be very different. Boss ask us to say a few words on company meeting about new project, speech on celebrations and weddings, an opening of exibition and other public events, on seminars, conferences, product presentation, workshops. It can be difficult for us, becouse a lot of people are staring at us, or we have to talk about a difficult topic, sometimes we feel that its easy, there´s nothing to be worry about.

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The more we want to have our presentation excelent, the more we usually feel nervous, our body stiff, mouth is dry, our thoughts are mixed up, we have performance anxiety, sometimes it´s called stage fright even we are not on the stage.

To cope with stage fright, we memorize our speech and we recite it like a poem, or maybe we are reading it from the paper, afraid to forget something. Between ourself and the audience we build imaginary glass wall that is supposed to protect us and we lose contact with the people. The more we struggle with stage fright, the more our speech is average and boring.

When we come a front of people with out presentation, we are entering into a certain field of energy. It's a circle of attention that is focused at us, and we perceive it as a pressure and a sense of responsibility for the outcome. So let´s call it field of attention. Also while we are in this field of attention we feel time go quicker. And therefore our speech is too fast and reckless. We want to have our performance already done. We are convinced that there is not much happening for the audience and that we are boring, and we even more speed up. But that´s just our subjective feeling. Audiences time passes differently becouse they do not feel the pressure of attention and responsibility.

Coping with stage fright

How we can work with the field of attention that we do not tend to accelerate and be nervous? How to stay authentic, so we do not face the audience just like figurines that are trying more or less with strained expression to do best performance? How to feel comfortable and safe in front of the listeners? How to be able stay in contact with an audience and turn lecture into a meeting ?

Because stage fright is mainly matter of a physical condition - physical symptoms such as sweating, heart palpitations, nervousness, fear, and so on - can not be just solved by reading some books. We cannot even significantly improve our ability to be spontaneous and natural after completion of short seminar or course.

To obtain the necessary calm down a front of the people, and become a good speaker, we must train the psychosomatics skills. How to control the field of attention you will learn only by repeated speaking in public.

Inner voice games

We therefore can seek as many opportunities for presentations. This path is pretty slow and risky. How many presentations will be weak until we learn enough to be good? Far better is an intensive training for example in the form of inner dialogue. What is that? The point is that every person includes many different inner voices. We have voice of Mr. Clever and Mr. Joker, for example, one is prudent, one is spontaneous. We have Mrs. Coquette and Mrs. Shy. We can be eager and lazy at the same time, it depends who we listen to. We can easily prove that fact by noticing how, in some situations, we have a dialogue with ourself. Maybe in front of the bathroom mirror.  „What 's that on your nose for red pimples ? It makes you look bad in front of those people ! But, nobody can notice that from a distance. This is good.“

It´s like inner game because we play with ourselves. It's a game of who is right and who we let to speak. But when we listen to just one voice, and we put up the mask of for example Mr. or Mrs. Smart during the presentation, then it´s not us. We are not authentic. We do not use our full potential. Mostly we get the word to just perfect Mrs. or Mr. Smart. Believe me, listening to Mr. or Mrs. Smart for even twenty minutes is quite boring. Maybe Mr. Joker or Mrs. Coquette could sometimes get the word and relieve the topic.

Inner voice games trains inner dialogue. Developing the ability to perceive all inner voices, all impulses that are present, and leading them to synergy. This training takes place in front of the audience, a small group of course participants. Each of them will go for a while into the empty space. On the training space we have no crutches, no props or fixed theme. We work only with impulses what interests us at the moment. We say loudly what is happening to us and we try to distinguish from which attitude it was told, what relationship we have to that and how can we reconcile it into one authentic, natural, impressive speech. The basis of the work is to find individual capabilities of each of the participants, notice inner dialogue and inner games we play with ourself and get feedback from an experienced teacher who highlights crucial moments. It is necessary to indicate where participant is doing well, so he or she can remember that specific body experience.

Quantity or quality?

This training can not be comprehensively described. Must be experienced because it is the experience. Individual experience, and it does not make sense to imitate the others. We only search and discover in ourselves. In this meaning, inner voice games are not only help for presenters, but for all people who are engage in self-development. It teaches us a better understanding of ourselves, better communication skills, how to work with our emotions, and so on. It is about concentration and relaxation at the same time, two contradictory states. It is possible to find the balance point, same as we are riding a bicycle or surfboard.
If we learn that, then we can really communicate creatively and more effectively. This is true not only for presentations, but also for other situations in life. We increse quality of our communication skills. 

Summary:

1. Training can greatly improve your ability to concentrate, think creatively, communicate, increase emotional intelligence and other abilities and skills.

2. Big advantage is that participants can use knowledge of inner voice games as selfcouching method.

3. This kind of work is related to the method as Inner Game  of Timothy Gallwey or Voice Dialogue of Artho Wittemann.

Luboš Pavel

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