Helping you manage your fear of public speaking

Meet Emma.

She suffers from something very common – a fear of public speaking.

Before you read her story, which explains how I helped her manage her phobia, I wanted to briefly summarise the techniques we used.

Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) uses the Traditional Chinese Medicine meridian system, as used in acupuncture. Instead of needles we use our fingers to tap on meridian points. It is a wonderful tool for releasing trauma and stress from the body’s energy system, allowing us to recall a traumatic event without feeling all of the emotions associated with it. I use EFT for any negative events, thoughts, feelings or emotions.

With Matrix Reimprinting, which evolved from EFT, we not only free ourselves of the negative emotions of the traumatic memory, but also transform the memory. When we did Matrix reimprinting with Emma’s memory, she was able to release the trauma and gain insights and understandings about the decisions she made at that time.

She then realised that those decisions were not right for her. A traumatic memory was transformed into an empowering memory.

Read her story below.

I first met Yvonne at a business networking meeting. It was about 3 months after I had decided to set up my own business. Yvonne gave us a brief talk about what she did as The Stress Medic and how she ended up taking this path after 30 years in the ambulance service. 

It was all very interesting, but to be honest, I’ve never been one for alternative therapies so I didn’t really know what she was talking about! In the past I’d relied on my GP if I had any medical problems and pretty much took the grin and bear it” approach to anything that played on my mind.

You know; the put up and get on with it kind of thing.

But after talking to Yvonne for a while I ended up being intrigued about how she used her chosen techniques to help phobias and life stresses. I was also very impressed with her talk and wished I was confident enough to do that too.

Living with the fear of public speaking

She explained that she could help me with my public speaking phobia. Obviously I’d heard about how practising makes it easier, that it would get easier each time I did it. I wasn’t convinced.

Instead I decided to have a session with Yvonne to work through this. 

She approached it from a totally different angle which I wasn’t expecting. We spent time identifying where my phobia came from. It was a strange thing to do but very interesting! I pinpointed a time at secondary school when we have to give a talk to the class about a topic that interested us. 

At the time I was experiencing the usual teenage angst. Not fitting in but trying hard to. Wanting to make a good impression and look “cool”. I spent ages trawling through magazines (no internet back then) searching for what I thought my classmates would be interested in.

I came across a charity that rescued performing bears from captivity and chose that. Even though it was a very worthwhile cause I knew nothing about it. So I ended up reading from a piece of paper, really quickly and staring at the floor. 

All the time getting redder in the face. 

That was always something the girls noticed and kindly” commented on. Kids are pretty nasty aren’t they?! Although I’m sure I was just as bad really.

It’s not always about fitting in

Looking back on it with Yvonne I realised why I had chosen that topic. Because I wanted to fit in. Because I didn’t want to be different from them. What actually happened was that I was really nervous and hated doing it. Simply because I had no idea what I was talking about!

Looking back now I realise I should have just been me. I should have talked about my real love at the time; Guns N Roses. Yep, I was a bit of a rocker. But no-one in my class was. Then came the great realisation that it’s not necessary to make everyone to like you. Better still, I realised I don’t actually want everyone to like me. It’s not necessary to be someone you’re not.

After the session I was chosen to talk about my business at the next networking meeting. 

I did it. For a whole 16 minutes. 

Everyone was really receptive and said it was a fantastic talk. Even though I started getting the sick stomach, quick beating pulse feeling I had grown used to, I used the technique Yvonne showed me and I was able to get up and do it. 

Funny how a fear of public speaking actually comes from a deep seated need to be accepted. 

I don’t worry about that now. As I’m sure all small business people know; people buy people. Unless you are yourself they won’t really trust you.