Monday, December 7, 2015

Overblown article title of the week - How to overcome the fear of public speaking in five minutes

At on December 3rd there was an article by Joel Comm titled How to overcome the fear of public speaking in five minutes. In just five minutes? Gee, that might involve an injection of something. Just a pill or a suppository couldn’t act that quickly.

But, look at the link. At some time the title got changed to that overblown one from a more reasonable 7 Tips for Overcoming Your Fear of Public Speaking.

An equally overblown opening sentence claims that:

“It’s commonly believed that the greatest fear common to humans is the fear of public speaking.”

But, when you click on that link you find the 2006 article instead talks ONLY about the U.S., which certainly is NOT all humans:

“If speaking in public scares you, you aren't alone, says Paul L. Witt, PhD, assistant professor of communication studies at Texas Christian University, Fort Worth.

‘It is even scarier than rattlesnakes,’ Witt tells WebMD. ’The idea of making a presentation in public is the No. 1 fear reported by people in the U.S.’ "

Back in 2005 Seth Godin published a book whose title began All Marketers Are Liars. Joel’s LinkedIn page lists experience as an internet marketer, which explains his overblown claims.

Then he goes on to list those seven decent tips: 

1]  Remember that it’s not about you. It’s about your content.

2]  Shake some hands before you talk.

3]  Keep in mind that you’re the only one who knows [how nervous or afraid you are].

4]  It’s OK not to be perfect.

5]  Audiences are made of people just like you.

6]  Be gracious with yourself.

7]  Your passion, knowledge, and experience can carry the day.

The 1962 image came from Wikimedia Commons.

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