Don’t Be Fooled by the “Naturals”
Recently, after finishing up a speech, an audience member came up to me and complimented my speaking. He said, “I really envy how calm you are. You’re really a natural at it.”
I felt bad for him, because he didn’t get it. Public speaking isn’t something that comes “naturally” for me. I have to practice my speeches for hours. One day in the future, it might feel somewhat natural. But for now, I’m getting by on sheer determination. I study what other speakers are doing, read advice and ask for feedback from experts. I knowingly put my very worst out there, so that one day I can get better.
The fact that he thinks that there are people who are just born with “the gift” means he’s already limited the possibility of what he might accomplish with just enough practice.
He’s unaware of the time/space between where he’s at and those he thinks are “naturals.” Unfortunately, he probably won’t spend the right amount of time to get better because he doesn’t believe it’s possible. He’s not labeled himself a “natural.”
He sees negative feedback as an affirmation of his belief that he’s not a “natural” at speaking. So why bother working at it? Although frustrated, he accepts who he is presently as all he’ll ever be.
Most successful speakers first believe in the possibility of getting better. They understand the process of mastery and the fact that with enough practice anyone can get to the top 10%.
They don’t believe that natural talent alone will get you anywhere. Instead, they seek expert advice and put the feedback and support to good use in their practice. Willingly they make changes and start again, over and over again.
They don’t get discouraged by the time it takes to make progress. They set goals for performance and taking action, but they don’t set timelines for specific results. They choose to commit to the long haul of their own personal development.
Public speaking is just one area where people make false assumptions about those who have attained mastery. But this same philosophy and strategy holds true for anything that’s worth doing or being. Success isn’t a secret or something only certain people are born with. The formula for success is available to everyone and fairly easy to understand:
Belief + Time = Mastery!
Thanks all for reading! If nothing else, label yourself as a “natural in training” so you have something to believe in…it’s where we all start!
Check out my Self Empowerment Contract for how to maintain confidence in the face of any challenge! ALSO
If you haven’t already, check out my Modern Day Guide to Gurus for how to find and work with experts who can help you achieve anything.