From Questioning How Senior Executives Perceived Her to Embodying Calm & Confidence: A Presence Under Pressure Case Study


Imagine that you’re about to walk into a room of senior executives—be it your own executive team or external clients…

How do you feel?

  • Are you “in your head?”
  • Are you battling internal chatter?
  • Are you worried that your nerves will negatively impact the way you approach these people?

If so, you’re definitely not alone! Michelle (Lead Accounts Director at an AdTech company, and one of our amazing Presence Under Pressure grads) admits that she struggled with these exact same things.

Despite growing successful partnerships and being promoted, Michelle still second-guessed how others (specifically, senior executives) perceived her at work. She questioned whether she exuded enough credibility to be taken seriously.

We sat down to talk about how her PUP experience helped her overcome her long-held struggle with internal chatter, and how it empowered her to communicate more confidently than ever before.

Watch our full conversation below!

We talked about how:

The most helpful, stand-out parts of Presence Under Pressure were…

  • Realizing that it’s ok to be nervous, everybody’s nervous…
  • Engaging in conversations with a level of comfort and internal calm.
  • Getting individualized attention and feedback in an intimate group setting.

“I was actually surprised throughout the course how NOT ALONE I was in this. I found that, although you can’t eliminate the nervousness, you can keep it in check so that you’re exuding a more confident and composed demeanor as you’re presenting, or even in more casual conversations…”

“Before [PUP], maybe I came off a little chaotic in my communication style. I think I’ve honed that in a bit more. I’ve been able to approach conversations with a level of comfort, and a level of internal calm that I didn’t have before.”

One of the biggest gifts she gained from the program was…

Giving herself the power to slow down.

“I was constantly in “fight mode”— battling what I [thought] someone else’s perception of me was as I was speaking with them…”

Through PUP, Michelle identified that she would speed up more as she talked in an effort “to beat” her listeners to whatever perception they were going to form of her.

By learning to slow down and take her time, Michelle explained that she’s been able to reclaim her power:

✔️ “I have my role for a reason”

✔️ “I’ve already proven myself by being in this room”

✔️ “Just giving myself the ability to slow down has given me a lot of confidence”

The small group format—learning alongside 4 other women—helped her feel validated and comfortable…

Michelle admitted that she was nervous about the group format going into it, but what she learned over the course of the 8 weeks, and felt from the very first week, was that it was a really safe space.

She explains that everyone opened up quickly about having similar feelings around speaking, and that the women’s mindful and supportive nature helped create a sense of camaraderie from the get-go.

“I made five new friends (including Brenne!) from this course and we have a Slack channel now. We’re constantly pumping each other up because we know that we’re all in these big conversations and big group meetings with our senior executive team.”

She goes on to share that one of her PUP cohort members recently Slacked the group to say that she’s going to be speaking on a panel in a couple of weeks, and that the rest of the cohort immediately chimed in to pump her up.

“I loved the group format and I’d 100% recommend it… I’ve been able to approach my clients and stakeholders with so much more calm and presence.”

The group coaching calls, reminders, and recaps were key parts of the experience…

“Brenne will give you individualized feedback. But it wasn’t just Brenne’s feedback, but the cohort’s that helped as well. I feel like I got the individualized care I needed while in a group setting. It’s the best of both worlds.”

Michelle’s always been a powerhouse, but it’s amazing to see how her new skills have allowed her to exude the calm and confidence she’s going for (especially around senior executives) while trusting herself on a deeper level. She’s living proof that nerves and second-guessing don’t have to undercut you or your ability to succeed. If you’re ready to feel more confident showing up (and speaking up!) when the pressure’s on, join the Presence Under Pressure waitlist today!

Our signature 8-week group coaching program will open up for enrollment again soon, and if you’re interested in joining an intimate cohort of 4 other badass women—who not only want to learn how to communicate more clearly and confidently under pressure, but also want to support you in stepping into your *next level*—get yourself on the waitlist! I can’t wait to send you all the deets.

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