Public Speaking Tips: Voluntary Vunerability and Great Motivational Speakers

Knowledge sharing is routine; sharing of self is what gains you acceptance.

Sharing of self is more important than sharing of knowledge - Being willing is the Key.

One of the five requisites of a great public speaker, one who can hold an audience spellbound, is voluntary vunerability. In other words, self-disclosure of his or her deepest, dearest beliefs, views which perhaps could be held up to ridicule, be reviled, or bring condemnation upon the speaker. I’m talking heartfelt passions which might not be considered favourably by the rank and file. I am talking an honest sharing of self. I’m talking: Sincerity.

The Five Requisites of a Great Public Speaker.

The five requisites of the great public speaker are: Burning Desire to Succeed, Sincerity, Knowledge, Vocabularly, and Practice. I’ve dealt with these in other Hubs. But in this one we will be dealing with the second one: Sincerity.

Sharing of Self and Sharing of Knowledge: Tom addresses Revesby Probus Club 2010.

Most only don't want to be motivated.  They just want to be entertained.  But they still appreciated vunerability and coming from the heart.
Most only don't want to be motivated. They just want to be entertained. But they still appreciated vunerability and coming from the heart.

The gift of love is self disclosure.

In a book by John Powell, Happiness Is An Inside Job, the author, a minister of religion, states: “The real gift of love is self disclosure. Until we have given that we have given nothing.” What Powell was talking about was in reference to a little book he wrote – for general publication – in which he admitted all of his many weaknesses and personal ‘brokeness.’ All this placed him in a position whereby he felt very, very vunerable. Yet this same personal disclosure resulted in Powell receiving four or five ‘letters of appreciation’ a week for the next two years. So great was this impact of self-disclosure, and so uncommon, that hundreds of readers benefitted in life-changing ways. For they, too, were then influenced to tell their own stories. The cathartic effect upon his readers helped changed their lives for the better. A great speaker can do the same.

Writer as guest speaker, Wahroonga Probus Club in Sydney in 2010.

Are you informing them?  Entertaining them?  Or motivativing them?  Which is primary?
Are you informing them? Entertaining them? Or motivativing them? Which is primary?

Vunerability equals fear, fear equals adrenaline.

There’s another thing to be said about vunerablily; why it makes for greatness. Vunerability equals fear, fear equals adrenaline, adrenaline equals increased energy, increased energy equals dynamism. So long as it is controllable - we don’t want inarticulate rage, inconsolable tears, or abject despondency on the podium - voluntary vunerability makes for communication at the deepest of levels. It goes beyond words, gestures, facial expressions. A sort of subterraineum current links everyone listening. Or maybe it is an energy field. Whatever it is, it gets the entire, rivetted attention of all who are a part of it. In turn, this energy field feeds back to the speaker. He or she draws even greater energy from it.

Centenary Dinner 'A Night to Remember'

A big speaking moment in my life.  I enjoyed every moment of it.
A big speaking moment in my life. I enjoyed every moment of it.

Speaking Tips:Voluntary Vunerability and Great Motivational Speakers.

It has been said that we are as sick as we are secret. From this statement you might think, “Ah, yes, mentally sick.” But no. I’m talking both physically and spiritually sick also. We are made up of three parts, body, mind and spirit, and each part acts upon the other. Often what ails us stems from the innermost parts of our being. We want to tell but dare not. People go to psychiatrists or clergy to devest themselves of burdens of guilt. They do this when their inner peace is so disturbed they can’t stand it any longer. They reveal themselves to their professional listeners because it helps. However, they keep what has been troubling them from the rest of the world. As well they might. Nobody wants everbody to know everything about them. Why? Because of fear.

Part of my audience at the Titanic Centenary Dinner

Little lifts the spirit so much as a speech well told to an appreciative audience.
Little lifts the spirit so much as a speech well told to an appreciative audience.

From good, to brilliant, to great. It comes from both sharing of knowledge AND sharing of self.

Yet this very willingness, this courage, to present the real you to an audience is the one thing which will bring you from being a good speaker, perhaps a brilliant speaker – to a great speaker. So the next time you’re scheduled to give a presentation, something which calls upon you to persuade someone to your way of thinking, tell them not only what you’re thinking, but how you are feeling. And not just at the egoic level, the fear of “they might find out about me,” but at the deepest level of all. Come from the heart. And you really will be communicating, not just ear to ear, mind to mind, but heart-to-heart.

I hope you enjoyed Speaking Tips: Voluntary Vunerability and Great Motivational Speakers.

Keep happy.

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1 comment

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lmmartin 5 years ago from Alberta and Florida

What an excellent and timely article for me. I don't know, Tom, if you have read an article I wrote about preparing for an audio-media interview where I shared my phobia of public speaking... Anyway, this is great. Lynda

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