In this lesson we’re going to discuss effective communication strategies to be more confident in meetings.
If you’re an anxious person or society anxiety has gotten the better of you, that’s ok I’m here to help. So let’s get right to it.
(1) Shut out Your Inner Critic
It’s important that before heading into the meeting, you banish the Inner Critic from your internal communication. That antagonistic agonizing voice in your head needs to pipe down in order for you to stand up. Whatever you need to do to quiet your inner critic, do. If that means drowning out the voice with music, do that. If it means getting on the phone with someone near and dear to you, do that. Other methods include getting in the zone mentally by doing a 10-minute or longer meditation, going for a walk, or engaging in a more strenuous activity (like running up the stairs, doing some air squats, lifting weights). Now if you’re going to the more strenuous activity, it would probably make more sense to do that well before your meeting since you’ll most likely break a sweat. Something that you could do absolutely anywhere is box breathing. To do this, breathe in for four counts, hold for four counts, breathe out for four counts, then hold again for four counts. Repeat this at the same pace for as long as you need. Try two minutes, then five and work your way up as you please. Try out one or more of these techniques and see what you like best.
(2) Reframe the Stress
It’s absolutely natural to have pre-meeting butterflies in your tummy. There is a strong gut and brain connection. What we’re experiencing in our minds, i.e., stress, can manifest in our stomach, i.e., an uneasy feeling in our gut. For many of us, the pre-performance jitters are an indication that we’re about to perform. Instead of impugning your nervousness as an indication of incompetence or ineptness, take it as a sign that you’re ready for the stage, metaphorically or not. In other words you’re ready for the performance, the action, to be in the spotlight, or present yourself in the best possible way in this meeting. Take those nerves and transform them into energy.
(3) Leverage Your Communication Strengths
Are you an ace at active listening? Use that to your advantage by demonstrating how attentively you listened to a colleague share important data points or to a presentation that you attended. Even if you are soft spoken and shy you can contribute to the conversation by showcasing your personality. Maybe you’re seen as a motivator to your colleagues and in the meeting you share your enthusiasm for a job well done. Or maybe you’re really good at asking important questions. It could be that you have a knack for intriguing and thought–provoking questions that piques interest, getting people to think critically about things. Maybe you’re extremely observant and you notice specific things that other people might have glossed over or not even noticed! The point is to leverage your strengths and communicate accordingly. Whatever you're good at, find some way to turn it into your contributions as well.
We discussed three powerful ways for you to be more confident in meetings. Before heading into the meeting, banish your inner critic from your inner dialogue and don’t let them get a chance to taunt you. Then take those pre-meeting jitters and transform them into energy to face any challenge that comes your way. Take those nerves as a sign that you’re ready to take action. And lastly, leverage your strengths and weave them into your communication skills to make an impact and contribute meaningfully to the meeting.
Alright Explearners, that’s it from me today. Thank you so much for joining me for this lesson. I hope that you enjoyed it.
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