“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1. The nervous and 2. Liars.” – Mark Twain
“The human brain starts working the moment you are born and never stops until you stand up to speak in public.” — George Jessel
“According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.” – Jerry Seinfeld
“All the great speakers were bad speakers at first.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Glossophobia, aka stage fright, is fear or anxiety associated with public speaking. It can encompass perfomance anxiety, fear of failure and the fear of being judged or rejected. It’s a very real and often incapacitating fear. Bestselling author Sam Harris takes on this great fear in his entertaining essay, The Silent Crowd: Overcoming Your Fear of Public Speaking
Harris says that “no one is likely to drag you in front of a crowd and force you to produce audible sentences” and you can go to great lengths to avoid it – even for a lifetime. But he notes that this fear and avoidance “…will periodically make you miserable, and it will limit your opportunities in life.” He suggests that “the only way out is through,” and he offers seven tips to help you face you fear and emerge on the other side of the podium.