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Guila Muir

Developing trainers, presenters and facilitators to make a difference

Articles Tagged ‘Fear’

Enthusiasm in Training

As a trainer or presenter, enthusiasm goes a long way in making you the best you can be. As your joy excites your participants, their energy rises to meet yours. People feel good. Work gets done. But what if your enthusiasm has taken a hit? How can you regain a sense of joy while giving…
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Focus on the Uncommitted in Your Audience

Presenters, do you fear waves of animosity coming from your audience? Or have you ever believed your audience to be friendly and accepting, only to receive a terrible shock? One of the best “Presenter Tricks” I know is to present as if everyone in your audience is “uncommitted”. Doing so allows you to effectively deal…
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Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Annoying Cliche or Truth?

I occasionally surprise myself by uttering the cliché above while encouraging a shy person to improve their presentation skills and confidence. I used to secretly kick myself for using such a hackneyed phrase—until I read Richard Wiseman’s great book, “As If.” In it, he cites dozens of studies showing that if we act a certain…
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The “I Don’t Feel Like Me” Blues

Have you taken a presentation skills course with me (Guila) and found yourself feeling strange, even “fake” as you practice unfamiliar behaviors? You may remember hearing my prompts during the session. They include: Use the Magic Circle! Own the Real Estate! Drop the Figleaf! Sternum Up, Shoulders Down! and even Show Your Body! Sometimes, my…
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FEAR, Revisited: Manage Your Presentation Nerves!

Do your hands sweat at the mere idea of public speaking? Does your stomach flip-flop, your mind go blank? Four guidelines from professional speaking coaches will help. 1. Don’t hate your nerves. Remember that your goal is NOT to overcome fear. Your goal is to deliver an effective message. When you invest yourself fully in…
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Dive In!
Presenting and Open Water Swimming

I am an “adult onset” swimmer. Learning to swim at age 46, I trembled with the same anxieties as many of my Presentation Skills clients. I even heard myself describe my experience using the same words. Swimming was unnatural, awkward, unnerving, and out of my comfort zone. Twelve years after my first lesson,  I continue…
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The Curse of Knowledge

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com Think of a skill you have, (such as driving, swimming, writing, reading…) Would you say you are unconsciously competent with this skill? That is, Can you do it without thinking about it? Is it part of you, like an instinct? Would you have a hard time explaining the steps of this…
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Presenting From the Seat of Your Pants

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com The Problem With Sitting Do you often sit while presenting? You can lose a great deal of speaking power that way, for the following reasons: 1. Half your body, with its eloquent capacity for language, is hidden. 2. Often, your hands are trapped under the table. 3. Your internal organs are…
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Your Biggest Gift as a Speaker

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com Does this sound like you? “I’m a fine communicator one-on-one, but put me in front of a group and I just die!” Why is it easier for many of us to present in front of a few people than to a larger audience? Why do many of us believe that some…
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Four Gender-Specific Presentation Blunders

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com Is it true that men tend to make certain types of blunders while presenting, and women others? In my experience, yes. I have worked with hundreds of individuals and single-sex groups, and notice recurring, gender-specific behaviors that sabotage presentations. In the interest of advancing further research, I submit these very common…
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Does Smiling Help or Hurt Presenters?

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com The actual answer to this question, based upon many studies and years of research, is “it depends.” How Smiling Helps The act of smiling changes our brain chemistry for the better. An authentic smile can: Boost mood and confidence by increasing serotonin, norepinephrine and endorphins. Lower heart rate, and Reduce anxiety.…
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Stand and Deliver!

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com Are you serious about wanting to increase your dynamism, power and energy as a speaker? Then you must stand up when you present. Andy Eklund, a presentation skills expert, tells us: “The vast majority of people are at least 50% less dynamic when sitting down, because their body movements are halved…
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Present With Purpose

To ensure a successful presentation every time, presenters should start by developing a clear, concise purpose statement. The purpose statement serves two important roles. It helps keep you focused and on track as you develop the presentation. It also helps your audience focused on your message from the get-go. Before you present: Clarifying the purpose…
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3 Rules for Excellent Presentations

I was excited to find John Medina’s great book, Brain Rules, in the San Francisco airport bookstore in 2009. The book is incredibly readable and valuable to trainers and presenters. I was thrilled most of all to see that Medina provides research to support 3 rules I’ve shared in my Train the Trainer classes for…
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Perfect Presentations: What Not to Wear

by Guila Muir info@guilamuir.com How to dress for credibility, while remaining true to yourself. What to wear for a perfect presentation? As you design and polish your speech, developing visual aids and handouts, this question may fall into the background until dangerously close to the presentation. Suddenly, you look up: “Yikes! What am I going…
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