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One Reason People have a Fear of Public Speaking is: “I Have Nothing to Speak About!”

Nonsense!  Nonsense

One of the main reasons people have a Fear of Public Speaking is they think they have nothing to say.  They believe anything and everything that could ever be said on a subject has already been said – and probably, many many times!

They imagine the audience will know more than they do about the subject and will consider their valuable time is being wasted.  They’ll be bored to death, give them a hard time during the Q&A, and perhaps leave before the presentation is completed.


I came to this realization after a friend emailed me a question.  I don’t recall what it was about, but I knew the answer and shot it back to him immediately.

Shortly, I received a return email that said, “Wow!”

I responded, “What’s so Wow!”

His reply: “Sometimes, your knowledge base is so wide and deep, You don’t know what you know!”

That statement had a huge impact on me, and I’ll bet it just did on you, too, correct?

The research shows that sometimes: Your everyday is someone else’s payday! Your everyday is someone else’s Ah Hah Moment!

Something you’re very aware of, do naturally, and don’t even think about could be an real eye-opener for others!

Almost everyone does have something of value to present to an audience.  One of the problems is we are too close to our own wisdom and often it takes an experience like my “What’s so Wow?” to realize it.

For instance, I write, speak and coach on the subject of Public Speaking and Presentation Skills.  People have been talking and presenting for thousands or years.

What, except for some recent  technology issues, could I possibly speak to an audience about?

Lots of things!

One of the reasons I know this is that although I’ve been studying Public Speaking and Presentation Skills for many years, I am continually learning new things!

Here are more reasons you Have something to say:

  1. Individuals are at different stages in their learning of a subject.

  2. Sure, some may know what you know, and possibly more, but many in the audience are newbies.

  3. You’ll be giving them far more information then they’ll be able to absorb the first time it’s introduced.

  4. Reinforcement.

  5. This is one of the best ways we learn.  Repeat – Repeat – Repeat

  6. Are you upset when you hear something you already know?  I’m not.  It might make it top of mind and something I can use now.

  7. Said differently.

  8. Often, we don’t GET something the first time we hear/see it.

  9. Sometimes, we don’t GET IT until we hear/see it presented in a manner different then we were exposed to it before.

  10. Example: I read a Post a few months ago saying “a lectern is a physical and emotional barrier between the audience and presenter.”  That was a “flash of the obvious” for me.  I know that!  However, I don’t have that information in my book (I will!) and didn’t have a slide for it in my slide deck (I do now!).

  11. Things do change!

  12. What the audience once learned may no longer be true.

  13. Some things, like technology, are changing exponentially.

  14. Example: Most of us have a computer, or a cell phone, more powerful than the computer the Apollo 13 crew had!

  15. If you’re continually updating the knowledge of your subject, the odds are you’ll be learning, and able to present, new information to your audience.

If  you don’t think you don’t have anything to speak about, try this: Start a “Speaker’s Folder” for possible speaking topics.

  1. What are you passionate about?

  2. What is the greatest obstacle you’ve overcome?

  3. What was your biggest failure?

  4. What did you learn from it?

  5. What is your greatest success?

  6. What do you collect?

  7. Where have you traveled?

  8. Where do you want to travel?

  9. Why?

  10. What is your profession?

  11. How did it come about?

  12. What books do you read?

  13. What movies do you watch?

  14. What is your greatest fear?

  15. What are you doing about it?

  16. Where have you lived?

  17. What schools have you gone to?

  18. What foods do you like?

  19. Are you a cook, baker, athlete, musician, ?

  20. Speak about it.

  21. Talk about your family.

  22. Speak about your dreams.

  23. Speak about _________.

Choose several of the above and start developing a presentation for each of them. (Mind Mapping is a great tool for this activity!)

Getting more than one off the ground works better than just working on a single presentation because you might hit a roadblock where you “can’t think of anything more” on that one topic.  (I usually have four or five blog posts at various stages of completion.)

OK.  Do you agree that you have lots to speak about?  I certainly hope so!  Now! – Start developing, practicing and then deliver those presentations with – No Sweat!

For reading, and/or listening, this far I’d like to give you a FREE Gift. Go to: to receive it!

About the Author Fred E. Miller is a speaker, a coach, and author of the book, “No Sweat Public Speaking!” Businesses and individuals hire him because they want to improve their Public Speaking and Presentation Skills. They do this because we perceive really great speakers to be Experts. Perception is reality and we rather deal with Experts. They also know: Speaking Opportunities are Business Opportunities. Speaking Opportunities are Career Opportunities. He shows them how to Develop, Practice and Deliver Knock Your Socks Off Presentations! with – No Sweat!

Fred E. Miller

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