Have you ever experienced nerves or second-guessing when it’s your turn to speak up? Perhaps your body tenses up and your internal chatter becomes the loudest voice in the room. The truth? You’re not alone. We ALL experience this from time to time.
The question isn’t whether you’ll experience some level of nerves or second-guessing.
The question is how you’ll nurture yourself from the inside when you experience those nerves or second-guessing…
It’s true you can try to talk yourself out of it. But a much more effective approach is to carve out four minutes to settle your nervous system before you head into that nerve-wracking situation.
I’d argue that the key to leveraging strong communication skills in the moment is setting yourself up for success before you begin speaking.
Use this 4-minute warm-up meditation to practice settling your nervous system right now! Or, come back to this video next time you’re heading into a big meeting or presentation.
Take up space and get centered.
When our limbic brains are in fight or flight mode, we often have the urge to *get smaller*. Literally. We shrink our posture and clasp our hands to make ourselves less of a target, and to self-protect.
When you feel that adrenaline rushing in, your body tends to look for its own “hiding posture”—without you even realizing it.
Which is why it’s so important to practice expanding your posture on purpose before you begin speaking so that you’re making yourself bigger, both literally and figuratively.
Then, you want to get centered by literally centering your shoulders over your hips.
This combination of taking up space while centering your posture will send an important neurobiological message to your body that you’re not in danger.
That, in fact, you have enough power in whatever situation you’re in to stay put, take up space, and not run or hide.
✔️ Pro Tip: Strike a power pose after meditation.
Power posing is a surefire way to imbue more confidence when you feel the jitters creeping up. It’s simple: before the event, strike your power pose for at least two minutes. It should be something that makes you feel capable and confident. The most popular power pose? Stand like Wonder Woman: chin high, shoulders back, hands on your hips, feet planted wide. I personally prefer to lift my arms in the sky like I just won a race. I find that when I do this for even 30 seconds, I feel more energized and excited than nervous.
When you’re nervous or uncomfortable, you tend to tense your muscles as a measure of self-protection. But all this does is reinforce the parts of your brain in fight or flight mode, keeping your anxiety levels high. These two meditation techniques will send a signal to your limbic brain that you don’t need to tense up and self-protect, you can release and be present instead:
✔️ Do a body scan.
Tune into the tension you’re holding with a body scan. Close your eyes before bringing awareness to each part of your body. Scan all the way from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet, paying special attention to tense spots like your shoulders, neck, eyes, and stomach. As you scan each section, release any tension you feel there.
✔️ Monitor your breath.
We tend to take shallow breaths from our chests when we’re nervous. So next time you feel jitters, evaluate your breathing! If you notice you’re breathing from your chest, relax your belly and focus on inhaling and exhaling from the abdomen. It’ll release tension from your midsection and help to lower your heart rate, too.
Want to learn more techniques for overcoming nerves and communicating confidently when the pressure’s on?
Click here to check out The Confident Communicator, our online signature course, open for enrollment today!
Inside this course, you’ll learn how to:
- dial down speaking anxiety with practical, science-backed techniques
- assess your own communication style, so you can pinpoint which habits serve vs. undercut you
- project the qualities you want others to see in you—without faking or forcing anything
- articulate yourself in a clearer, more engaging and “tailorable” way
- build presentations in half the time, but with double the impact
When you join, you’ll also get 4 bonus coaching calls with me, so we can dig into your burning questions, role-play real-world situations, and get you speaking with more clarity and conviction than ever before!
Whether you decide to join The Confident Communicator or not, please remember: even though it might seem like everyone else is calm, cool, and collected on the outside, we all deal with some form of speaking anxiety on the inside! You’re never alone in those feelings, and we’re always here to support you as you work with and through them ✨
All my love,
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