e75 Harnessing the Power of Presence with Eduardo Placer
[00:00:00] Welcome. Welcome to the Heads Together podcast. I'm your host, Joe Mos, and this week I'm bloody thrilled to be joined by the absolutely fabulous Eduardo Placer. Eduardo is just, oh my goodness, I've, I've only spoken to him once before and he captivated me. I mean, seriously captivated me. He's the c e o and founder of Fearless Communicators, which is, he's based in New York, his.
Know what to say and how to say it, I think is how he phrases it, which I just love. But he's also a keynote speaker in his own right. He's a social entrepreneur and a global community builder. His client list is it, it sparkles. Trust me. It is. A [00:01:00] very impressive list of people that he has worked with. And I'm not surprised, Eduardo was a professional actor for 15 years who worked all over the states.
All over the world actually. Um, he's traveled with his work and he's acting and he's just, ah, you've gotta find out. He is. Just a delight. Uh, we have a great conversation in this episode all about harnessing the power of presence. So Eduardo really generously shares with us in this episode. His, his mantra really, that applies to every client he works with when it comes to getting the best them in terms of public speaking.
So giving a talk. You
one. Just the thought of public speaking scares you and you really wanna dial [00:02:00] that down and embrace being a little more authentic when you talking to a group. Then this episode, ISO brings this to life for us. Yeah, I think you're gonna love him as much as I do. So let's dive in.
Welcome, welcome to the Heads Together podcast. I'm Jill Moss, and I am obsessed with cutting through the noise when it comes to growing your business. Each week via intimate coaching conversations and inspirational stories. I share what it really takes to get the results you want. In a way that feels right to you, I am all about attracting higher ticket opportunities, building authentic relationships, and creating the abundant, full fat version of your dream business.
I mean, how many of us have beavered away creating a light version of what we really want? The thing [00:03:00] is, I honestly believe when you are outstanding at what you do, there is no limit to what you can achieve. So are you ready to put our heads together and make it happen? Let's go
Eduardo. Welcome. Welcome. How are you? I'm doing wonderful. Thank you so much for having me. Aw, thank you for joining me. And that was really like. The reason I'm uber excited to have you join me is that we had such a powerful conversation together, didn't we? In private. And I suddenly thought, oh, I actually wish we'd had this entire conversation on the podcast because I, I feel like it would be selfish to keep you to myself.
I need to share you. So, um, thank you so much. Will you, just for everyone listening, tell us a little bit about who you're and your business. Sure. So my name is Eduardo [00:04:00] Plusser. I use he him pronouns. And when I talk about my work as a public speaking coach, I always begin with second grade and show and tell clutching a stuffed animal seal.
And I'm staring at my classmates and I'm saying something magical like seals or mammals. They live in the water, they eat fish. Sometimes they're eaten by sharks. And I thought that I crushed it. Beautiful. And then when I looked at my classmates, there were 12, but it felt like 50. They weren't interested.
And then I uttered, I don't know what, I was moved by the spirit to say. I named him after Brett MacGyver, who was the blonde, popular boy that I had a crush on in second grade in Miami, Florida in 1986. Talking about truth bombs, Jill Truth bombs. Priceless. Yeah. Time that I. Felt unsafe. I literally take the tear in that moment and it's something that I've had [00:05:00] to reconcile ever since.
And I think that many people in their life turn their healing into their work. And for me, the opportunity to be free in front of an audience, being fully seen as I am without having to edit or excuse. Or pretend is a liberation has been like the liberation of my journey in life. Yeah. And I think a lot of people are hungry for it.
Yeah. So many people are hungry for that and for so many people it's so bloody elusive. I think there are so many people who want it, and this isn't even, is it about getting up on a big stage in front of a huge number of people? This isn't just about that, this being comfortable just. Speaking as yourself, authentically as yourself to anyone, right?
Yeah. And I say there's no such thing as private speaking, [00:06:00] so sometimes people will think public speaking is having to. 300 or 400 people, or a thousand people or 5,000 people. But this is public speaking. Yeah. One I'm speaking to you, you know? But the other thing is, if I'm speaking loud enough, my neighbor, I live in New York City, a neighbor is like walking outside.
They can hear me. Right? So we have these, it's all the people who think they're in a private conversation on a phone. On the tube or in the Metro, or they're walking down the street and they think nobody's listening to them. It's like we can all hear what you're saying. Yeah, exactly. The ones I glare at all the time when they're on the train.
Talking really loud. Those ones. Yeah. Passive aggressively. Yeah, really passive aggressively. Like especially, and for Britts, that's quite hard as well. We don't do that. We're not even that good. 'cause normally we just sit there like this. That doesn't, that doesn't come over that well on a podcast,
but on, but with someone speaking on a cell phone loud in a train carriage, they get the full on passive [00:07:00] aggressive. I will hold your stare. Yeah. Till you start speaking more quietly. Yeah. Mm-hmm. This is.
Yes, that's right. That's how I like my train rides to go. But it's true, isn't it? There is no private speaking. I mean, what would that be? So if that's the case, then I know we're diving in really quick, but it's just that this is a really interesting concept for me that we all get frightened of public speaking, but actually if there's no such thing as private speaking, it's not the public speaking, we're frightened of what is it?
I think it's being looked at. Okay. It's interesting. It's like looking at a mirror, right? So how many people love to stare at themselves in the mirror? Not very many. I mean, there are some people who really love looking at themselves, but most people, even when we're looking at a mirror or we're looking at a photograph, we always want the reflection [00:08:00] of.
Who we want almost others to find other people's standards. Right? Like I know, like I will hold the camera a certain angle to get a certain perspective that makes me feel good about myself. Yes. Always. You know what I mean? Or when I'm looking at a mirror, I'm gonna look at a distance that does not highlight the parts of myself that I don't wanna see.
You know, I was a stage actor for 15 years and even for stage actors, the act we, we have to get head shots. It is tor. To go through hundreds of pictures of yourself, you know, to find, and then to post them online and say, what are your faves? And inevitably what's so interesting is the more something didn't look like me, the more I liked it.
Oh, now that is interesting. Is it right? It was like, oh, I love that picture though. Like, Well, you look like that one. You're like, but I don't like that one. I like that one. But you are right. We do do that because I don't you think there's always like a tiny bit of us that's disappointed [00:09:00] when we look at a photo or look at ourselves.
In the reflection. Well, when and when we hear ourselves too, I think we probably have an idea of who we are in our mind, and then we're greeted with reality. Not a lot of people are okay with that. You know, I think the thing that's interesting about the stage, and I think one of the things that traditionally the stage, and I'll say the stage is the public speaking.
Yeah. Which is me in front of people. I think that so much of our fear is connected to the beliefs that we impose upon others, that we think they're thinking what we fear about ourselves. Whew. So for example, when I get up to speak in front of a group, like my biggest fear is people are gonna think, I'm not qualified.
I don't belong, I don't fit [00:10:00] in. I'm not professional. I'm too gay, right? They're all these things. Yes. And then I'm in my head kind of trying to figure out, well, well, who do they want me to be and how do I perform who I think you want me to be? Which is oftentimes many steps away from the truth of who I am and how powerful to have the courage.
That's why I said at the beginning, it's actually so simple and so hard. Yeah. How do I let go of all the presentation, the performance, and just allow myself to show up as a person to communicate the truth that I'm here to communicate in this moment, and there is something physical about. The event of speaking, if I'm speaking to one person, V versus five versus 500 versus 5,000, it's a different energy.
There's a different lift [00:11:00] that it takes, but I don't need to be another person. No, I don't have to be a character. I don't have to be a role, and I think this is part of this idea that I love about presence that we're talking about. I think people, some people call it charisma. Some people call it luck.
Some people call it talent. Right. But I think really what we're talking about is presence and there's nothing like it. I think you're absolutely right. So, so what I'm hearing is, Finally getting the courage to stop performing. Stop trying to second guess what someone wants you to be. Or when we stop kind of tailoring ourselves almost into this fictional character that we've decided other people want us to be, that's when we can actually start being present.
And when we are present, that's the [00:12:00] key. That's the secret. That's the elixia that we're all looking for. That sometimes we think only happens for other people, talented people, charismatic people like you say. But it isn't, it's, it's the authenticity to use the overused word. Yeah. Yeah. And there's something really powerful about when somebody who.
Really owns that presence. What, like, I, I remember, I'm gonna speak from the context of dance. There was a woman dancer who is in her fifties and her entire dance was an homage to her dance teacher. And she, the whole dance, sitting in a chair. And it was one of the most beautiful things I've witnessed because it was all about presence.
Right. And if you think about like an 18 year old or a 19 year old [00:13:00] dancer, oftentimes what it is about is hysterics, histrionics, back flips all the special tricks, right, that you have to do to over perform, right, to over, show off my talent, look at all that I can do, and here's a woman who's just sitting in her chair and there's more dance and more movement.
In what she's doing and what she's not doing. There's so much dancing in her non dancing. Right. And I think that's when we're talking about this event of speaking, if we can give up that we don't have to, the labor of pretending that we're somebody else and if we can liberate ourselves to. Creating the circumstances that would allow me to be fully present with my audience, not in my [00:14:00] head, in an exercise of perfection.
Trying to please, I want, I wanna do a good job. Do you know what I mean? For myself. But show up and say I have something to offer. I know what it is that I'm talking, I'm not talking about winging it, making it up, just showing up in front of people. It's like, I, but you're prepared, but not from a place of control or pleasing, but really showing up from a place of service.
I just think that that's, that's where the magic lies, you know? And when you're present it, you're like, oh wow, this is mastery, this is, this is something else. And when you're in the show, When you're watching someone in the show, you sometimes you're just like, Ugh, I'm tired. Yeah. Yeah. So I'm thinking like, for my listeners who I know struggle with this, the women that I work with, I tend to work predominantly with women, not exclusively, but predominantly.
Mm-hmm. [00:15:00] They really crave visibility and then they reject it at the same time. Right. So they crave it because they have something to say. They have a message that they wanna get out there, but then they reject it because it's so,
Thoughts out there? Your, your true thoughts and it's so scary to risk looking. I think that you said something, it's like you're people are scared of people looking at you, and that's what it is. Because what you're really scared of is people looking at you and you. Disappointing them, letting them down, making a fool of yourself, all of those things.
That's that fundamental core, isn't it? Of what people, what scares people. So how do you help, because I know this is something you work with clients on in terms of helping people overcome that and really learning how to be [00:16:00] confident enough to be present and to feel into it in their body. So I wanna talk about confidence and then I'll talk about the other piece.
'cause it's actually really interesting. One of the things I love is etymology. So I'm a big fan of root words because what I love about language is that a word didn't exist and there was a human experience of something and then someone uttered a sound and we gave that. Sound meaning as a word. And then over time that word continues to deepen its relationship to a meaning.
Now there's what the origin meaning was, and then what we think it means now. And sometimes it's not the same. Right? And sometimes so. So again, from a, from a word perspective, like what does this word really mean? Sometimes we're in what we think something means, which is useful, but I love going to the original source.
The curiosity of, well, what is this word actually communicating and telling [00:17:00] me? And I had a client who was at Columbia in their coaching program, and she was doing a dissertation and a paper on confidence. And we were sitting in a conference room and we were crafting a keynote around the topic. And I said, well, let's look up the etymology.
What does it mean? What is literally the word communicating to me? What is it trying to say? And the word confidence comes from and means with trust. Huh? If I don't trust myself, I will not be confident. And if I don't trust my audience, I won't be confident either. But that's this tightrope of trust and that's what's happening.
In that context of speaking, if I don't trust myself, I can't show up fully present because I'm gonna be in my head. Yep. Right? And if I don't trust them, then I'm not gonna feel safe, so I'm not gonna feel confident either. So you almost have to like, I'm trusting myself and I'm surrendering. Yes. Any control and allowing the belief that trust with the audience.
And I [00:18:00] think as a speaker, you're gauging that. I mean, this is what actors also do. There is that tightrope of trust, but you are in relationship with that audience, in that conscious and subconscious tugging on that balance. Of trust so that you can be fully present with them so you can actually speak to what they need to hear.
Not what I prepared on the piece of paper. Like I could have prepared all night for something, but I show up with an audience and I'm like, wait a second. Whatever it is that I'm saying right now is not communicating to them. I can either stick to what was on the paper or I can pivot and respond to what the moment is calling for, but I gotta be able to trust myself in front of an audience to be able to do that pivot.
Mm-hmm. And that is a practice. And that practice, which is what we lead our clients through. I say we're grounded in body, we are present in mind. We lead from the heart and we speak into the spirit of our shared humanity. Oh, can you say that [00:19:00] one more time? Grounded in body, present in mind. We lead from the heart and we speak into the spirit of our shared humanity.
So, Think, but what I'm gonna do is speak like that's the first thing. And there's all the stuff that you have to do before you speak. Yes. So, and this is it, isn't it? This is that harnessing the power of presence, which is what we call this episode. This is the power, correct. It is a practice. It's not a destination, and it changes depending on the audience.
It changes moment by moment, right? Because the moment, this is a new moment, this is a new moment, this is a new moment. This is a new moment. I can learn from the past, but every moment is a moment to be present in. What we do is we begin with a body, because most people. Don't have a relationship to their body as an instrument, as a tool.
We work the brain, but the body is divorced [00:20:00] in relationship to speaking and the pressure of being in front of people. I. Whatever your history is with your safety or lack of safety in front of people, has your body in some type of reaction. For many people, the experience of fight or flight and what you have is many people are like, I'm not feeling anything.
I'm not feeling anything. I dunno what you're talking about. Meanwhile, they're not breathing. That goes blue. Your body. There's, there's something wrong. I'm happy. I'm feeling great. This is, this is amazing. This is amazing. The best day of my life, ly overly hydrating. I have to go to the bathroom every 23 seconds, but I'm fine.
But I'm fine. I'm fine. I love it. I love it. So the, the part of it is acknowledging, wait a second, I have a body and my body's having a response, and how do I slow that response down? Okay. Right. Right. And that is having a physical practice of [00:21:00] preparation, which has to do with breath work and stretching and figuring out where do I carry tension in my body?
Is it my shoulders, is it my jaw? Is it my neck? Like where am I feeling tight and contained and maybe terrified today? And how can I locate that in my body and create some room and space? Right. So that's part of that physical practice. 'cause you're also channeling some of that energy. If anyone else is doing this, who's listening, but I'm as you such a good voice for this as you are saying it, I feel Myers dropping.
Oh, oh, good. Keep going. Length. Length, yeah. And I mean, as I'm doing it, it gives me an awareness. I think it's something for people to note that as I was speaking about the body and connecting to where we carry tension, all of a sudden you probably started focusing think, oh, wait a second. I am feeling something in the back of my neck right here, or in my lower back or in my legs, or, Ooh, all of a sudden, wait.
Second, I am in a body. And how is, how am I checking in with [00:22:00] my body in this moment? Not 'cause I stretched yesterday or not because I stretched whenever, but it's the practice. The practice. Lemme connect here. Lemme round into this body. And then what I, what I say is this is the present and mind piece is acknowledge and name the fear.
Mm. So people have an experience, which is, I'm panicking. I'm scattered, I'm ramped up, and I think it's important to name that experience something. Some people call it excitement, which is a beautiful reframe and I think many people will experience it as fear. And I think if what we can do is say, wait a second, this fear is a teacher.
Teacher, and it's showing up and it has something to teach me. And maybe what that feeling is connected to a thought. I'm trying to please this audience. They're [00:23:00] not gonna like me. They're gonna think I'm stupid. They're gonna think I'm silly. They're gonna think I'm not qualified. They're gonna think that I don't belong here.
They're gonna think that I'm too fat. They're gonna think that I'm ugly. You know, they're gonna, they're gonna notice that, you know, I've been eating a lot of cheesecake lately. They're gonna whatever. The thing is that when you actually like name it, not 'cause you're thinking it, but when you actually name it, you're like, that's really what's stopping me from showing up here.
This probably silly, silly belief that I've been dancing with since I was like eight or nine, you know, showing up. I'm gonna let that control the moment. I'm gonna let that be in the driver's seat. I don't think so. So then there's an opportunity to clear it, to name it, to clear it. Just to say, okay, if, if I, if I've named it, if I've said, okay, this is what it is, now I can distinguish it.
I can choose something else. Otherwise I'm just surviving the experience. And that's the key, isn't it? That until [00:24:00] you name it, until you confront it, face it, look at it. You don't get the opportunity to choose something different, correct. It's running the show whether you're conscious to it or not. It's running the show.
There's a, a beautiful acrostic for fear, which is false evidence appearing real. That's it. There's another one that someone shared me, which I really loved, which is Face Everything and Rise. Ooh, I like that as well. I haven't heard that one. Face everything and rise. And I think that that's, that, that facing it, I mean, to face the fear, it, there's a beautiful term.
My family is Cuban and a Spanish origin and there's something called ada, which is give face. Mm. So look at the person in the face and say the thing that you don't wanna say. That's hard, right? We avoid it, we resist it, we withhold [00:25:00] it. Or like we people please around it. Procrastinate, all that stuff. And I think that really to grab power over it, I think to be fully present, I have to be able to make a distinction between what's going on in my brain and what's actually happening out there in the world.
Mm-hmm. And that brain is trying to protect me. And fear is one of those tools which maybe served you when you were eight or 12 or 22. Whatever, but maybe not in this moment. And the thing is, the body doesn't know the difference between rational fear and irrational fear. Mm-hmm. You swimming in a lake and all of a sudden there's like an alligator coming at you, your body's gonna experience something.
Yeah. And it's that same feeling. It's the same one that it feels when you're standing in front of people speaking or when you have to like raise your hand in a meeting and talk out loud. I mean, the panic and the dread that people have. Should I say something? Should I sit? Not something, say something.
You [00:26:00] know, I'm gonna wait. Someone else is gonna say something, someone else, I, I, I don't have anything to offer in this meeting or this conversation. Meanwhile, they're like sweating 'cause they're like, I have ask. I'm like, I have that experience too. And the more I want the respect and validation of that community, the more I'm gonna be in my feelings about it.
So true. It's so true. So again, you're having a physical response, so acknowledge the body. Number two, name the fear, what is it that I'm afraid of? And then I think there's a true calibration, right? As a queer person, there are parts of the world where I would go to that are dangerous, right? So, so that's that, that evidence is real.
That's not false. That is, that is real. So sometimes I have to operate or hide who that, that it is in my safety to protect myself. There's certain things that I'm gonna say, or I'm not gonna say out of, out of a need or sense of personal safety, disregarding. That is crazy is insanity. That's not what we're talking about.
That's not what we're talking about. [00:27:00] Right. But there is, if I'm, if, if I have to give a presentation, I'm walking into a room, oftentimes I have to calibrate this list of fears that I have because if not, what happens is then I am trying to perform who I think they want me to be. And that's a disservice to me and.
It's also like, not why they hired me, you know, or not, it's not why I'm there. Yeah. So then what we talk about is crafting heart-centered content, meaning that it's all about connection. Yep. So I'm speaking for a purpose and I think if we think, you know, and you're British and you know, as an American, our, our educational systems are oftentimes very similar, which is lecturing.
Yeah. Teachers at the front of the room. Yeah. Blah. Charlie Brown. And you're sitting down taking notes and you can either be there or not be there. Yeah. [00:28:00] And it doesn't matter. And I think that that, that's also someone who's trying to speak to your brain, but then you'd have a teacher that like spoke to your heart and all of a sudden you were like, this is different.
You are so tuned in because I matter in this conversation. So that's, that's the piece of it that if, if you're up there as a speaker, and now what I'm doing is I'm ensuring that whatever it's I'm communicating makes sense to you, which is different to just being good at telling a story. Hundred percent.
And I think that at the moment, you know, this storytelling, which is super important, but I do think there is a disproportionate amount of focus on being a great storyteller, that people are almost trying to shoehorn a story into anything. And what we're coming out with is this, you know, a ton of, kind of disingenuous about the.
Aren't really true stories, it's just that someone said you had to tell stories and therefore [00:29:00] we've kind of made a story out of going to buy a banana. Right? Whereas what you are saying is that actually the content comes first. It's leading with the heart. Heart led content is incredibly important. The connection is everything.
Your talent as a storyteller comes next, but the content has to be heart. Well, because of what you're, whatever you're saying doesn't exist in a vacuum. It exists in relationship to the audience that you are speaking to. If I haven't considered them and they can either be there or not be there, then they're thinking, well, why the fuck am I here?
You know? And I think that there is something magical when. You have. Uh, and, and again, people think they're storytelling, but they're not storytelling, they're story dumping, or they are timelining or they're talking about themselves. It's also event dumping. Well, I did this, I did this, this happened, this [00:30:00] happened, this happened.
Then this happened and this happened. And, and then suddenly the audience is like, uh, and I need to know this because why? And the thing that I think is interesting about storytelling is we use story to extract meaning. Mm-hmm. So there is what happened. Mm-hmm. There's what happened to you, or there are the events of the story.
Now I, as a storyteller, can piece those story, those events together in different ways. Mm-hmm. And tell you a, a different story. Like we could have a whole room of people with the same series of events and everyone's got a different story. So there's something interesting about that, and I think that has a lot of agency for the storyteller and a lot of responsibility.
Mm-hmm. But the, the point is that I put those, those events together to extract a certain meaning. Yeah. And that is what you wanna be in relationship to your audience about, which is, what is the meaning, what is, what is it that I'm piecing together for them? Like, how am I putting these [00:31:00] pieces together for them?
Now, my, I believe my goal as a speaker, Is to put the pieces together that I think are gonna afford them greater clarity around whatever message it is that I'm looking to impart. Mm. They can like it or not like it, right? That's not on you. They can believe it or not, that is not on me, but that's because they don't have to believe it.
Like, I'm not sitting on any throne saying, I, I know everything about it. You're welcome to disagree, you know. And communicate it to them. Right? And my job is to communicate something to an audience, ideally, so that they get something out of it. Otherwise, why? Why was I up there? You know? And again, whether they agree or disagree or like it or not like it, I set an intention in communicating that to you.
It's gonna resonate for the people that it's gonna resonate for and it's not gonna resonate for the people that it's not gonna resonate for. And that's okay. That's okay. And I think one of the things that's beautiful is that you can also leave an audience with an [00:32:00] experience, which is like, I didn't agree with anything he said.
She said, but I understand their point of view and I understand their message. I think that's a win. Oh, I completely agree with that. That is an absolute win. That's an absolute win. Right? In fact, that kind of challenging response when someone. Isn't necessarily leaving, you know, like, oh, bravo, Bravo.
Absolutely agreed with every point there. I think that's actually quite exciting to leave, to divide an audience and to have someone go away and say, I really didn't agree with that, but damn it put that across well, or it damn got me thinking about that now. Oh, you know, that's a privilege of working all over the world.
One of the countries that I've happened to do a little bit of work in is, is Israel. And, uh, this is a broad generalization. Israelis can be very direct. They're not mincing words culturally like Americans as an American, Americans like to hedge and mince words and [00:33:00] everybody, everybody is like, that was amazing.
That was extraordinary. That's the most you've ever heard really was like, that was shit. You know, that was not in Britain. We in the audience. Oh.
That means, and in American that means that was awesome. But in Britain we just like to say, that was nice. That nice. That was really, that's really nice. Nice. Yeah, that is. And the American's offended. The American's like,
you're not meaning me at my high level pitch of excitement. But the Israelis.
74% of people suffer from speech anxiety and everybody else lies and this. That's good. I like that. I got up and he was like, I don't experience fear at all in public speaking. And of course it was [00:34:00] a man. It's not, I mean, I do get women and other humans who own that belief and, and I, what I said to them, which I, which I didn't make anything wrong with that person's.
Reaction to it. But I love that I got a reaction out of it that made it really alive. You know, that I had a hot, I had a hot response to it, and what I said to him was, I said, congratulations. That is amazing that you've never experienced that and don't experience that. And I'm gonna invite you as you're in this room to consider that this is something that.
Many people, if not the vast majority of the people in your life. Maybe it's like your team, if you're a business owner, right? Or your colleagues or your wife or your children or your parents deal with. And maybe there's an opportunity to wear their experience through this conversation so you can better [00:35:00] understand where they're coming from.
And was he receptive to that? He walked out. Ah, yeah. And that was okay. That's a great example. Thank you. It was the present moment that was alive, that was there, that was alive, and it wasn't the message for him in this moment. Yeah. Great. Yeah. And he left. Great. Great. Yes, because it isn't, the connection isn't just about agreement, is it?
Connection isn't about people just worshiping every word you say, you know? It's, that's not what it's about. Yeah. And then the, the last piece of it is the speaking into the spirit of our shared humanity is then getting outta the way. I love that, speaking into the spirit of our shared humanity and then getting out of the way.
Right? That's getting outta the way. So I am connected to my body. I'm, I'm connected to my breath. I'm in this present moment. I'm not letting the fear run the show. Right, [00:36:00] but I'm actually present here not looking at an audience and projecting onto them my fear or my shame, or my doubt or my insecurity, but just like, oh, there's Mindy with a polka dot dress, you know?
And there's Stanley with a bow tie and there's Eugene with a make hair makeover. The hair come over. There's sad wearing that, that unflattering color, you know, whatever. But I'm just like in the moment with, with people. Yeah. Being people. Just people present in the moment. Just people like me in this moment, right?
And saying, my commitment in this moment is to just really make a difference. Show up like a human being in this moment. Just make a difference. I'm gonna take the fact that you're here, human beings in this room taking time. Now I've prepared, I've done my work, right? I'm gonna take you on a journey. Let's go on that journey.
And everything else is nonsense, right? And you're [00:37:00] speaking from your expertise. It's crafted and and shared in a way that is intentionally there. So they understand so that they get it and the audience is like, wow, I matter being here, or this feel, I feel so seen in this experience and this exercise that there isn't some like wall between us.
You're actually in space with me and then you're like, that was magical. And what's interesting is the word inspire comes from the same root word as the word to speak to spirit inspire. So, so going back to etymology, so spirit, inspire, aspire, aspire spirit, and it means with breath. Mm-hmm. When I inspire, I breathe in.
When I expire, I breathe out. When I aspire, it is with breath and spirit is with breath. Our spirit is in our breath, and when we speak, our voice rides our breath. If I had no [00:38:00] exhale, I would have no speaking. Mm-hmm. So notice we begin the practice with connection to the body and the breath. Yep. Right. And what I'm doing with my breath and my voice as I expire it to you, you inspire it.
And now your words move me, literally. Mm-hmm. Transform me, elevate me, challenge me. Confront me, stimulate me, titillate me. The power of communication in communion with community. Right, not what you wrote on the piece of paper that you're trying to recall in an exercise of perfection, but actually I'm attuned, one to myself and two to the audience showing up in service of them, and that's why you're there.
And that's what you're doing and that's the difference, isn't it? That last piece, you said something that really like [00:39:00] landed with me, which was when you are showing up in that way, there's no barrier between you and the audience. You are sharing a human experience. You are not the teacher speaking down to them, you are not reciting off of a a sheet so that you have no feeling in what you're saying.
You are sharing a human experience. That's the difference, isn't it? Right there. That's the difference. And so another word you used a couple of times in this conversation was letting go of the control, like an important part of this, this final piece. When you've done that preparation work, you're present in your body.
You are using your breath, you, you've got to the point where you are, you are ready, you are ready to, you've made the connection. Your content has the meaning. It's then about letting go of the outcome, isn't it? It's letting go of, [00:40:00] yeah. The reception. Mm-hmm. Also letting go of all of it. Ah, right? Yes. Like, yes, like, can I let go of all of it?
And because you, it is possible that you're up there and you're like, you know what? I have spent three days preparing for this moment. Well, three minutes, three days preparing for this presentation or whatever, and there's absolutely zero here. Let's say that truly in the moment may be resonating with my audience.
Like, are you able to scrap it all and say, you know what? None of this. Matters right now. I'm gonna pivot. Here's what I think matters right now for you. Here's what I feel you need to hear. This is what I feel needs to happen right now. Now, now you have prepared, because you probably prepared a lifetime for to be able to, to pivot in that moment, right?
Yeah. But what happens is then the audience is just like, [00:41:00] now we're present. Yeah, yeah. Now our ears are up. Our ears are up. I remember there was a moment I, I, I had the privilege of playing, uh, the mc in Cabaret, and I don't know if this really happened or if I am imagining that it happened in my head. It really happened.
I'm like used to that it, that it already, it really happened. It really happened, but that I was singing the opening number. You come and welcome.
In the middle of it, so like feel calm and welcome friend straight, but like the ability, like someone sneezes, you're like, God, and you keep on going into the song, right? Like that. The audience is like, what the hell just happened? There wasn't a wall, there wasn't a barrier. We were all human beings in a room and we witnessed this thing happen.
When we are able to give up the illusion [00:42:00] of a barrier between us, right? It's one of the things I love about living in New York City. I'm on a subway. There's no barrier. There's no barrier. I mean, we're just all in each other's air, right? Space all the time. New York City, like there's no, you know, it's like literally you're crashing upon people all the time.
Breathing things. You don't wanna be breathing, inhaling things you don't wanna be breathing. Right. But I think that that's why when we, if I can treat that moment and invite us to just be human beings together in a space virtual or in person, but in a shared space together, and really allow that moment to be filled with.
Value and meaning and connection. I mean, it feels like a reprieve, you know? It just feels like a relief. Yes. And actually if [00:43:00] we, if we let ourselves make every experience of being with people or having conversations of any kind, if we let every instance of that be like that, this podcast recording. We could have prepared for hours and had a script and very, very set questions.
But actually, I wanna see here, I wanna look at you. I wanna laugh at the things that are making me laugh and I don't want to be confined to a particular conversation. And I, I guess it's a bit like that, isn't it? It's be brave enough to follow the meandering. Off the river. Yes. And, and together. There are no straight rivers.
No. Right. That is a, that is a human construction. Right, right, right. It's one of those things that when when you travel, whenever you see straight lines and right angles, that [00:44:00] is manmade always. That is not always like squares when you're flying over land and you're like, there are lots of boxes. There are lots of squares.
That's human beings. Lots of perfect circles. Definitely. Yeah, those are just scary. That's aliens obviously, given.
So I used to be obsessed with the tree planting in France because I have never seen trees planted in such straight lines. So that doesn't, as you're going past in a car, there'll be like a plantation bit of trees on the, on the side of the road. And it doesn't matter what angle you're looking at them from, as you go past, they all look like straight lines 'cause they're planted so meticulously spaced, it just looks like a straight line, whatever angle you look at them from.
And that, that is fascinating to me. Yeah. And exercise imp perfection and exercise imperfection. Yeah. Yeah. And the crazy, and it's also like an [00:45:00] exercise in taming, right? Because. The trees don't naturally grow that way. No, they don't. And they're manicured and overly meticulate, you know, beautiful in its structure, you know.
But it's interesting that their nature of horrors a vacuum. Mm-hmm. Oh, life finds a way, always. It always finds a way. And I think maybe that is the, the piece as we're thinking about something to leave people with is to not be afraid of that. 'cause that's really the gold. In your speaking. Tell me a bit more about that.
Yeah, that I think that that the little weeds that are growing in the nooks and the crevices in the vacuums and the holes, yeah, the life that's growing, that sometimes we think is unpleasant or dirty or I would really rather not have that mess present, I think could be an interesting [00:46:00] place to mine.
Because we all have it as human beings, right? And I think that that is why when people oftentimes share of hardship or struggle, we feel relieved because we also have hardship and we also struggle. And there's a feeling sometimes that we gotta perform, that we've got it all put together, or we know all the answers.
If I see, and I witness an epic disaster, like I don't wanna witness that either. But I think the, I wanna see the weeds. I think you're right. I wanna see the leaf that is growing a little ance and a skew. I wanna see the like that may that I'm curious about that. I'm curious about the one that's outta line just an inch.
I'm interested in the branch that is growing outside of the structure. 'cause why is it sticking out or why is it there or, and I feel like that is maybe a metaphor for that part of us that we are terrified. [00:47:00] Being seen and yet that's where all our eyes go. Do you know what I mean? And it may be the truth, right?
I think you're right. There are like hundreds of trees that are in the str, in formation in that line. And then there's that one little branch that's sticking out and everyone's like, you can't take your eyes off of that branch. And it's 'cause it's not like the others. There's, I think, something real, we would also say it's off.
Yep. About that. Yep. And yet that is alive and for some reason that's the parable that we're, that we're landing in In this moment. Yeah. We're landing in. Exactly. What's come up for me then is in this kind of current climate we're in at the moment with AI and you know, a lot of stuff that isn't, In some ways as real experientially, I think we are more and more craving the less polished, the [00:48:00] less perfect.
Oh yeah, the more real. Yeah. So it makes sense, right? It makes sense of why our eyes land on the the tree branch that's sticking out. Yeah, because one of these is not like the other Sesame Street.
I love it because that goes back to the authenticity conversation that we had, right? Where people drop that authenticity. But I think there's an opportunity to reflect on when was it ever a good thing to be authentic? When, when was it a good thing growing up? To be the tree? That branch that was out a little bit?
Mm-hmm. Yeah. To the side. Yeah, absolutely. But actually what we sent is conformity, not authenticity, and then yet everyone's like, be authentic. Be authentic, be authentic. I dunno how it wasn't safe to do that. I don't know what that means 'cause I've been told not to say it or do it, you know, stay in that line.
That's it. Yeah. And I think [00:49:00] that that's part of that liberation, which is like, what if I can color out? I can color outside the line, which brings us so beautifully back to what you opened with her, um, for us, which was about that liberation of harnessing the power of presence. When you're speaking and, and you have so, so beautifully walked us.
And I thank you so much. What that triggered for me was the word alive. Mm-hmm. Yeah. And I think that there is something, can I allow myself to be witnessed being fully alive in a moment? Do I have the courage? Do I trust myself? And do I trust that my audience will be okay with me being fully alive? Yes in this moment and when you experience it, 'cause you get glimpses it and glimmers of it, it's not all the time, [00:50:00] right?
I think there's nothing like it. I think it's truly magical and that is my wish for your listeners that they have that experience. I wish that for them too and for me. And for you obviously, tell us a bit about how your company, fearless communicators, how do their, how do you serve your clients and how can my listeners kind of find out a bit more about you?
So we're a public speaking coaching business. We work with people on what they say and how they say it. So we work on content creation and we work on delivery, and all of our work goes through that process of being grounded in body, present in mind, leading from the heart, speaking into the spirit of our shared humanity.
So that is. The container that holds all of our work from, for our speakers and our clients have been everything from US presidential candidates to UN diplomats, to founders of tech companies, to social activists. People out in the world looking to [00:51:00] make a difference and need support getting out of the way so they can really be the channels for that message.
So we do that with individuals. We also do a program called Fearless Fire, where we work with humans on crafting like a TED Talk in six days. It's like getting shot out of a cannon. That's an exciting program. That's the one that's got me captivated. That is an exciting program. Right, because there's what you think you wanna say and then there's the truth.
Yeah. And can you create that container again to use a facilitator word, where people feel safe enough to actually say the thing that they really wanna say in the way that most sounds like them. And that is liberating. So we do that program and then we also come into organizations and teams and talk about the experience of public speaking.
So the fear of public speaking, how people can master the fear of public speaking. I say hack the fear of public speaking. We also work on story and storytelling. So I think if people are really interested in learning more, they can [00:52:00] obviously go to our website, www fearless communicators com, and then you can also send an email to info at.
Fearless communicators.com and then we'll also have people feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn. We can put that link. I'll put all of the links in the show notes for sure. And on Instagram at Stand for Fearless. So that's the best way to get ahold of me. Perfect. Well, thank you so, so much for being with me today.
I find you a really calming influence on me, even though I have so many hysterical tendencies when I listen to you talk. I kind of follow. You have such a way of talking that I follow your cadence and I find it an absolute pleasure to talk to you. I really do. So thank you so much. This was a really lovely conversation.
I appreciate you. Well, thank you so much for having me, and I'm honored to be here with you. See you again soon.[00:53:00]
I hope you enjoyed this episode and that getting our heads together this week has filled your mind with what's possible. If you love the show, would you do me a massive favor? Please? Would you leave a five star rating on Apple Podcasts? It would really help you Put more heads together, reach more ears, and expand more minds.
Until next week, bye for now.