If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’ll know that over the last couple of months, I’ve been stuck in bed due to an accident. I’ve been using the time to resurrect a long-held dream.

That dream is to create an online program to help people overcome the fear of public speaking.

Tony (my husband and business partner) first had the idea of creating such a program in 2001. Helping people with the fear of public speaking had been Tony’s passion for a long time – he gained a psychology degree specifically so that he could help people with this issue. He coached people one-on-one and they had great results.

In 2001, the training world was starting to talk about “e-Learning”. And Tony saw the potential to scale his impact and help many more people.

We found an IT company that understood his vision. We invested tens of thousands of dollars.

It turned out that the IT company was only pretending to understand the vision. We lost our money.

Since then running our business providing presentation skills courses in New Zealand has kept us busy, and we allowed the dream of being able to help people all over the world, to fade.

But we never let go of it.

And now we no longer need to pay an IT company tens of thousands of dollars to create an online program.

So over the last couple of months as I’ve been stuck in bed I’ve returned to the dream and I’ve been busy creating what I think is going to be a transformational online program to help people to overcome the fear of public speaking. I’m calling it Journey to Confidence.

I’m incredibly excited by what I’m creating, but it’s time to let you know about it and see if you’re excited too, and if it’s something you would be interested in. So here we go:

Journey to Confidence is for people who identify as introvert and suffer from the fear of public speaking when they speak in front of a group. I’m creating it for you, if you can resonate with these thoughts:

“I forget what I want to say. I can’t find the right words. I can’t even form proper sentences. My mind just freezes!”

“I’m saying to myself ‘Will I mess up? Will they like me? Will they believe in me?’ Sometimes I don’t believe in myself! Do I really know this stuff?”

“I get so nervous when I feel people’s eyes on me. My heart starts pumping uncontrollably. I start sweating and shaking.”

Journey to Confidence brings together three elements:

1. My Own Experience

I’m an introvert, and used to suffer terribly from the fear of public speaking. I’ve gone on my own journey to become confident speaking to groups. Then over the last 20 years I’ve coached thousands of people years to overcome their fear of public speaking and gain confidence. Here’s Andy Williams’ story:

“I was a living, breathing example of the fear of public speaking.

Following your course, I’ve presented 20 public seminars. I feel relaxed and confident in what I’m doing, and most surprisingly of all I actually ENJOY doing them!

2. Evidence-based Psychological Strategies

Over the last 20 years, Tony and I have experimented with different strategies to help people with the fear of public speaking on our courses. In particular we’ve drawn upon and adapted elements of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Drawing on the principles from these therapies and what I’ve learnt over the last 20 years about dissolving fear and stepping into power, I’ve designed a new process called the Disapproval Immunization Process™.

This is the process that I wish I’d had when I was terrified of speaking up and avoided public speaking opportunities.

The Process will be at the heart of the Journey to Confidence program. I’ll write more about the Disapproval Immunization Process™ in a future post.

3. The Science of Behavioral Change

Over the last 20 years there has been a tremendous amount of psychological research into the science of behavioral change. For example, gamification is being studied as a way of making behavioral change more effective. I’m using the principles from this science to structure Journey to Confidence.

Soon I’m going to be looking for my first students to be the “beta” group for this program (“beta” is a term from software testing – meaning trying out the software with the intended audience). These first students will get some incredible perks and will help me make this a really effective, transformational program.

My vision with this program is to help people overcome the fear of public speaking so that they can apply for the jobs and promotions they want, go after leadership opportunities, promote their business with speaking, and share their ideas so they can make an impact in the world.

 

Update

I’ve now launched the first run of Journey to Confidence. You can find out more about the program and sign up to be on the waitlist for the next program at this page.