No Mistakes In Public Speaking

Learn from your mistakes

We all worry about mistakes, failure and rejection. We avoid failure and when it happens we take it personally and see it as a set back in trying to achieve our speaking goals. But failure is fundamental to our learning. As we try new things and push the boundaries to try and improve our speaking confidence, we are bound to have some failures. But it is what we do with these failures that is important. We can analyse them, adjust our strategy, get feedback, and try again. Who remembers trying to learn to ride a bike? How many times did you fall off? But you kept getting back on until you mastered the bike. The same goes for public speaking, you need to keep getting back on the bike.

Learning is a process of self discovery. Learning is not a straight line curve that goes steadily up, rather a series peeks and troughs, of failures and successes that over time gradually trend upwards to a position of greater knowledge. Dr Susan Jeffers describes these ups and downs as “oops’s”.

My new philosophy is that; “there are no such things as failures, just opportunities and lessons from which we can grow. This philosophy is supported by others including;

  • Stephen Lundin, “We learn little from success, but we learn much from failure”
  • John Powell “The only mistake we make in life is the one that we don’t learn from”
  • Kieth Ferrazzi “Behind every successful person stands a long string of failures; toughness and tenacity can overcome these setbacks”.

So the next time you stand up to speak, realise that there are no mistakes, just lessons from which you can learn and become stronger.

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