Do you have a fear of public speaking? Three Tips to Move from Death to Diction!

hugh anthony, certified lifestyle speaker · author · lifestyle coachr


publicspeaking dread

Have you had the experience where you find it challenging to tell your story in an articulate and effective manner, even though you know it well; and there is value-creation in what you have to offer or share? However, the thought of standing in front of an audience to share your story terrifies you.  The very thought brings fear – the fear of public speaking otherwise known as ‘glassaphobia’.   Psychology Today highlighted that public speaking is the number one fear in the USA; interestingly this has been for the last 40 years, next to death. As an individual is this happening to you? Do you want to learn how to embrace it and understand the techniques to overcome it?  You might ask why?  Public speaking is an important life skill you need to develop, not just to be successful, but to become significant.

How do you move from the fear of death to diction? It is by developing the energy and learning the techniques to help you overcome your fears of public speaking.  Here are three tips to help you get over your fear, develop the skills needed to get out of the sea of sameness and float in the ocean of difference and become an exceptional public speaker. The following are three thought-provoking tips to help you:

1. Acknowledging Your Fears by Starting a Conversation with Self

“I have to face the fear. I have to take control of the situation and find a way to make it less frightening.”

                                        ― Veronica Roth, Divergent

An opportunity exists for you to acknowledge your fears by firstly listing them (download my checklist).  By doing an authentic assessment of your fears is an exercise that you can become a normal aspect of developing your public speaking skill. There’s a voice inside your head telling you that you can’t overcome this, and that is completely okay, you are having an internal dialogue, which attempts to convince you that you can’t overcome those fears. Be mindful in this exercise.

Once you have identified what your fears are on your list, start ranking them in order of the level of fear (low to high).  Then create some quality time and identify what is the source of the fears identified.  Once identified, you prepare yourself to come up with two solutions to overcome these fears.    This will help you to honor those fears, and start your preparatory exercise of getting over your fears a reality.  Building on the fears identified, visualize yourself doing exercises with the solutions you have noted.  Try it and see how once you acknowledge your fears and where it can take you. This will help you with your confidence, and build your competence.

2.  Developing the Spirit of Mastery

 “Becoming the best version of yourself will equip you to spark change in others.”

                                                 —  Thai Nguyen

With you building on your exercise, you are learning to manage your response to your fears and taking actions to develop self-mastery.  Once you observe and recognize your fears and the solutions, you begin to make peace with your person and you start to overcome your fears to become a master.


To help you develop a spirit of mastery and become a better public speaker, let me share my SpeakSIMPLE™ Technique that I have used to connect with my audiences over the past two decades.

The essence of the SpeakSIMPLE™ Technique is to help you speak your story in a simple, yet engaging way.  Your experience, passion and skills are a tapestry of interwoven stories, be it from a cultural or situated experience. Storytelling and public speaking is at the heart of who you are as a human being, existing in a collective no matter what space you are speaking in.

“Stories are a communal currency of humanity.”

–Tahir Shah, in Arabian Nights

The SpeakSIMPLE™ Technique emerges from six simple steps to guide you in developing your dialogue for your audience that is guided by a question and learning strategies that help you to make the choices to challenge conventional norms, become more engaging and develop a positive orientation towards becoming an exceptional public speaker.


3.  Learning the Art of Storytelling

“Great stories happen to those who can tell them.”

                                                   –Ira Glas         

Your audience will remember your stories, not necessarily your statistics. They will remember the ideas you shared.  Storytelling is an art form and public speaking is a life skill that is interactive between teller | speaker and audience engaging in an interwoven tapestry of words, sounds, visuals, imagination and characters in an emotional and sensory narrative. Storytelling is simple and they are three key elements to sharing your story with your audience.   The Why Matters – You want your audience to know The How Matters – Your audience came to interact with you by sharing their time to listen and be engaged in your story, your presentation and how you make them understand your story now why the story matters by giving context to so they can relate to it. Is it relevant? The WOW Factor – By understanding the Why and How (take away the hy from Why and the H from How and you get – WOW. That is how you create the WOW.

Related article: The Art of Storytelling: Your Life as a Tapestry of Stories

You will no longer be in the sea of sameness, now that you are one of the individuals who will be getting over their fear of public speaking! Let me know how you are doing by leaving a comment and please share this post with your friends. If you want to learn more about public speaking, sign up for The VIP Experience for my forthcoming book – The Ultimate Guide to Public Speaking: 7 Steps to Professional Mastery click the link below:


© Hugh Anthony 2016


Hugh Anthony is a lifestyle speaker, author and researcher, with interests in the creative industries, tourism and hospitality, and not-for-profit sector.  He is the Co-Founder | Consulting  Lifestyle Director of Consulate | Milieu® a boutique lifestyle consultancy firm in Toronto, Canada that specializes in creative, avid and exciting art-based and lifestyle projects for its diverse clientele. Hugh Anthony is currently a Doctoral Researcher at the University of Waterloo, Canada where he is undertaking research on the Film Festival Industry, with his current focus being on The Role of Programming in the Film Festival Experience: Curating the Cinematic Muse.

Hugh Anthony is an enthusiastic and consummate thought leader who loves to write and is the author of the forthcoming book The Ultimate Guide to Public Speaking: 7 Steps to Professional Mastery to be published Summer 2016.