Chapter 1. Step Zero

BEFORE YOU NEAR THE STAGE, before you write the talk, before you even pick a topic, take time to get comfortable with the idea of giving a talk.

You’re reading this because something about public speaking makes your palms sweat. You aren’t alone; when I created an anonymous survey and asked, “What’s your biggest fear about public speaking?” I received over 300 replies. Though the fears all revolved around being vulnerable in front of a large group of people, I was surprised how widely the responses ranged.

See for yourself—I’ve grouped a handful of replies to illustrate the spectrum of fears.

  • People are worried about ...

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