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We've scoured the web so that you don't have to - check out the marketing articles January had to offer:

1. 10 Good Business Practices in Any Market

2. 14 Marketing Resolutions A/E/C Firms Should Make in 2018

3. Green Building for Everyone on Education

4. How Drones Can Be Used in Architecture

5. How IKEA Continues to Push the Boundaries of Design

 

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Public Speaking Fear? Drown Out That Negative Voice in Your Head

By Gilda Bonanno

If your stomach churns just at the thought of speaking in front of a group of people, you're not alone. In fact, Americans rate public speaking as their number one fear - even ahead of death (hence the old joke that you would rather be in the coffin than giving the eulogy)!

Think about what's going through your head right at that moment when you're getting ready to open your mouth, whether it's at a staff meeting at work or in front of the local YMCA parents' group.  Yes, I admit that I hear voices in my head - and I bet you do, too.

Take a moment, close your eyes and really listen for that voice - what is it saying?

When I ask clients to share what that voice in their head is telling them right before they speak, they invariably come out with a whiny, annoying voice spewing negatives like "you're going to make a fool of yourself" or "who do you think you are?"

That voice goes by many names.  Creativity expert Julia Cameron calls it "The Censor." I call it the "Joy-Sucker" because it sucks the joy out of your work and your life.  The Joy-Sucker undermines your confidence and makes you less able to convey your knowledge and experience to your audience.  In its worst manifestations, it may even cause you to forget your own name! The Joy-Sucker may come from old beliefs about ourselves or perhaps a comment made by an unhelpful friend, teacher or ex.

Instead of allowing the Joy-Sucker to sap your confidence, I recommend replacing it with a positive affirmation or mantra, a term borrowed from meditation and yoga that means a word or phrase that you repeat to yourself to focus your mind and energy.  Your mantra should be personally meaningful to you and should be a phrase that you can believe.  You can use a song title (Aretha Franklin's "RESPECT" comes to mind), a line from a poem or anything that makes you feel powerful and confident.  "You go, girl" is my favorite (accompanied by a mental fist in the air).

Once you have created a mantra, try it out in real-life situations. When you're getting ready to speak, listen for the Joy-Sucker and replace it with your mantra. Remember that the Joy-Sucker has had years of practice, so it's okay to try several mantras before you find one that is powerful enough to drown it out.

You'll know the mantra is working when you feel your anxiety decreasing and your confidence increasing (a little bit at a time).  As you build your confidence, you'll be able to tap into your knowledge and experience related to the topic at hand - and you'll be on your way to becoming a more polished public speaker!

 © Gilda Bonanno

Gilda Bonanno helps you transform your communication, presentation and leadership skills so you can have more confidence, influence and success. She has worked with leading organizations, including GE, Travelers, Praxair, Assa Abloy, Wells Fargo and Yale University, on four continents from Chicago to Shanghai and Rio to Rome.

Since 2006, Gilda has delivered thousands of in-person programs, her YouTube channel has received over 1 million views and her digital newsletter has reached subscribers in over 45 countries since 2008.

Gilda has a proven track record of partnering for results with people in a variety of industries and at all organizational levels, from C-level executives to sales teams to frontline managers.  She collaborates with them to help them lead more effectively, communicate more clearly and create and deliver more powerful and engaging presentations so they get results.

Sign up at www.gildabonanno to receive her twice-monthly newsletter for practical tips you can use to improve your communication, networking and presentation skills  

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