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Editor's Corner
Excerpted from the February 2003 Newsletter

It's all in your head

I once saw a cartoon that said it eloquently:

One golfer, looking dapper, focused and ready, is standing on a golf course surrounded by a gallery of thousands while the image in his head is of himself alone on the golf course.

The other golfer, disheveled, awkward, uncoordinated, is standing on a golf course alone while the image in his head is of himself surrounded by a gallery of thousands.

What a great illustration of a quote by Olin Miller: "You probably wouldn't worry about what people think of you if you could know how seldom they do."

It's what we think, not what anybody else thinks that shapes our experience. Nike's slogan, "You're either in the zone, or you're in the way," gives us a clear choice. And the golfer (or the speaker) that embraces the image of being the center of everyone's attention will never be in the zone.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "You set your own price."

Dear teach

Chris Bell, writer, Hollywood, CA:

"As much as I have anguished over having to give presentations, I dreaded the thought of taking a course on the subject; but I went for it. Your teaching techniques are great; each day was fun, and now fear is not a problem. I now know what to focus on.

"For me there is immediate application in pitching a play to prospective producers. I know that pausing and taking time for eye contact have a persuasive influence and are an important part of connecting with my audience."

First person

Katherine Wong, Executive Assistant, Edison International:

"Since I graduated from your class last November, I had my first mock presentation last week. Although there was no real audience, I was presenting to two members of the speakers' bureau as a part of my interview to join the club [speaker's bureau]. I am glad to report that I did it with passion and the "not about me" attitude, and most importantly, I paused. I did forget to say something in the script but who cares.

"I will let you know whether I am selected to join the bureau. Regardless, your class really helped me a lot."

Presenting a written script

How do you present a written script you don't feel comfortable with?

People actually think they're doing you a favor when they give you a written script. And, of course, it's often done to make sure that all audiences receive the same message.

Someone worked really hard on that script and so they might consider they did you the favor so you wouldn't have to do all that work.

However, the pressure on the speaker increases when you're given a script. It's natural for you to assume you have to say it word for word (or close to it). And the person (or group) who wrote it was trying to sound professional and corporate, so they used business words (rather than conversational ones) and included way too much information.

They have to include too much information to be sure they've covered everything you might need to know in front of any of the audiences to whom you'll be presenting.

Here's what I'd try to get away with: consider the script as research and background someone has given you to help you prepare your talk.

Step back to view the occasion as a whole and do what you would do if you were preparing it yourself. Who is the audience? What do they need to know and why? Identify the main message and main subpoints.

In other words, understand the message and its purpose, rather than trying to memorize the script. Once you feel in tune with the material you can take some liberties with the script (make it more in your words) and still satisfy the requirements of the presentation.

Try including these in your presentations

I always prefer to believe the best of everybody; it saves so much trouble. ~Rudyard Kipling

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion. ~Dalai Lama

There is no greater loan than a sympathetic ear. ~Frank Tyger

Never miss an opportunity to make others happy, even if you have to leave them alone in order to do it. ~Author Unknown

Wherever there is a human being, there is an opportunity for a kindness. ~Seneca

Kindness is in our power, even when fondness is not. ~Samuel Johnson

Don't wait for people to be friendly, show them how. ~Author Unknown

The most important trip you may take in life is meeting people halfway. ~Henry Boye

The best way to knock the chip off your neighbor's shoulder is to pat him on the back. ~Author Unknown

Kindness is the greatest wisdom. ~Author Unknown

Love someone who doesn't deserve it. ~Author Unknown

In about the same degree as you are helpful, you will be happy. ~Karl Reiland

How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world. ~William Shakespeare

Listen or thy tongue will keep thee deaf. ~Native American Proverb

Always be a little kinder than necessary. ~James M. Barrie

Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden, They Call Me Coach

Words that Change the World

You can hear words that changed the world ... Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech, Neil Armstrong from the moon, and other 20th-century recordings.


Think gifts. Someone you know is going to be giving more presentations soon. Give them a practical gift that will make those presentations easier and more effective. Learn more or Order Online.

"Getting Over Yourself: A Guide to Painless Public Speaking...and More" by Barbara Rocha 208 pages, illustrated, cartoons $19.95

Audiotape or CD ROM
The "Getting Over Yourself" book on audiotape read by the author ($17.95) or CD ROM ($19.95).

Booklets by Barbara Rocha:
$9.95 each (+$1.50 Shipping and Handling)
"Pocket Guide for Presenters"
103 pages

"60 Ways to Spark Your Speaking: Just in time answers to frequently asked questions"
154 pages

"Love to Talk/Hate to Speak: Selected articles by Barbara Rocha"
121 pages

Speeches on Tape:
"From Bored Room to Board Room" $10.95
"Stand Up and Stand Out" $10.95

"Getting Over Yourself: A Guide to Painless Public Speaking" featuring Barbara Rocha in excerpts from her book, seminar classes and interactive coaching. VHS $99.95

Learn more
Order Online
Call (888) 800-2001
E-mail: BouldinHil@aol.com
Write: Bouldin Hill Press at 17-555 Bubbling Wells Rd., Desert Hot Springs, CA 92241


**How to Overcome the Stress of Public Speaking
Pasadena: 3-day workshop October 25, 26, 27, 2010.

We have two public seminars each year: May and October/November. If you have several people who could use this training, contact us regarding an in-house seminar.

As a refresher, workshop graduates (from any of our 3-day workshops) may attend for half price at any time. People tell us they get as much or more out of the workshop the second time around.

Visit our seminars section for details or call (888) 800-2001

For more information, contact:

Barbara Rocha and Associates

PO Box 60521, Pasadena, California 91116

(626) 792-8075

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