Did Shakespeare Destroy Your Public Speaking Confidence?

Jul 13, 2020

"Oh God, I HATED Shakespeare in school."

This is the reaction I get from 90% of my public speaking clients when they learn that, before I was a public speaking coach, I taught Shakespeare performance at an Elementary/Middle School. 

I didn't think much of it the first couple times a client said this.

After all, Shakespeare isn't everybody's cup of tea. 

But after 5 or 6 clients said that exact phrase to me, I started to get curious...

Why was hating Shakespeare such a common experience among my public speaking clients? 

I had a blind-spot. 
 
The kiddos I taught loved Shakespeare.
 
The group of rambunctious third graders I'd recently worked with got to spend an hour pretending to be witches, dressing up in crazy costumes, and thwacking each other with foam swords. 
 
I mean, what wasn't to love?
 
What was different between my students' experience with Shakespeare and my adult clients' experiences? 
 
And while we were on...
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How Much Should I Be Memorizing?

Feb 02, 2020

To memorize, or not to memorize?

That is the first question most of my public speaking clients come to me with. 

Here are the two scenarios I usually hear: 

  • If I try and memorize my whole talk, it takes HOURS and I end up sounding stiff and robotic. 
  • When I just wing it, sometimes it turns out great, but sometimes I completely lose my train of thought and start throwing out “likes” and “ums” all over the place. 

Either of those sound familiar to you? 

(We’ve ALL been there.) 

So, how much exactly should you be memorizing? 

In my opinion, whether your presentation is 5min or 90min, the answer is the same. 

Here are the 3 elements to memorize: 

  • Your Hook
  • Your Closer
  • Your Roadmap

Let’s break that down, shall we? 

Your Hook 

This is the opening of your talk. You always want to start your presentation with a hook that engages the audience

Your hook can take many forms. Here are a...

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