I want to get rid of stupid nerves.
I’m having confidence issues with my voice.
Have you ever said this? I sure have!
Turns out there are two powerful questions to ask yourself to help you clear your nerves and instead allow your voice to come free so you can create the impact you desire with your audience.
Because when you are nervous and doubting yourself, your audience feels that.
These two questions apply when you are performing a song, giving a talk, speaking about your work to others, social media lives, and networking.
Essentially, it’s when you communicate with your audience.
If you are dealing with low confidence, ask these three questions of yourself. You can even grab a journal if you like.
What do you love about what you are speaking or performing about?
What is one word to describe the specific work you are speaking about?
What is the journey you are taking your audience on?
Let me give you an example. This week, while cleaning out my computer, I came across an old recording of me working on an audition song with a coach back in 2010, and I literally said I wanted to get rid of stupid nerves and was having confidence issues with the song. I had a brand new love ballad, but hadn’t sung it in an audition yet. I felt I wasn’t “ready” to sing in front of my audience. I was doubting myself. And you could hear it in my voice. There were moments my voice was free, and moments I was tentative and pulled back. It was inconsistent and not a real representation of my ability.
My coach asked me, “what do you love about this song?” I then listed several things, and this helped refocus me away from what I felt wasn’t working, and instead on what I actually ENJOYED about what I was saying. I loved it wasn’t a typical love song, and I loved the soaring melody. I truly thought it was beautiful.
Then he asked me what the song was about, and challenged me to come up with one word. I started with something really broad, saying “hope”, so he asked me to dig deeper. I then said the song was about rejection, but recognized that would not help me impact or inspire my audience. The energy of rejection felt so depleting. After some prompting, I came to my one word. The song was about courage.
My coach asked me, “what don’t you have at the beginning of the song?”
He then asked, “what if you find it in the process of delivering the song? What if you come out a different person? This is empowerment!”
And you could hear my whole voice change. Now that I was connected to what I LOVED about the song and what the song was actually ABOUT, I could place my attention on communicating these two powerful pieces to my audience, instead of swirling endlessly in my head about how nervous I was.
My energy and attention was on love and courage, not how stupid I was or that I didn’t have any confidence. Turns out the confidence was there, it just needed to be brought out with some powerful questions.
And the piece that really sticks out is that my coach put my focus on the PROCESS, the JOURNEY of what I was singing about. Singing about not having courage and then finding it? Much more powerful than rejection.
Remember, your audience wants to believe in transformation. They are at point A and want to go to point B, which is why they are listening to you. They want to find their confidence too. They want to discover their courage, and reconnect with love. They want to journey from pain to happiness. This is a basic human desire, and when you harness that in yourself, you will connect more deeply with your audience and inspire them they can do the same.
This is true impact. When you can inspire change in your audience.
So, let’s apply this to you.
* First list out what you are working on now. This can be a talk, a presentation, a new song or album, an auditions, an upcoming gallery opening, or releasing a book.
* For each thing, ask yourself these three questions BEFORE you speak to your audience about it. This could look like writing out your answers before your next social media live, before your next gig, or before you are writing your next newsletter or blog.
* Then let those answers be the content of your communication. Meaning, you convey what you love, the specific word that describes your work, and the journey you are taking your audience on to discover that word or feeling you came up with in the second question.
Your nerves are actually a beautiful sign that you need clarity. It’s actually a call for help so you can create the impact you desire.
Reclaim you confidence with these three questions, and watch your impact transform.