conventions

So Much for the Fear of Public Speaking

I’ve watched a lot of last week’s and this week’s conventions (and I mean a lot), and there have been some impressive speakers.

And I’m not necessarily referring to the content of what was being said, but more to the style and poise and grace of the speakers.

I expected people like President Obama, Joe Biden, Cory Booker, Michelle Obama, and Bill Clinton to be outstanding, and they were. In fact, they were phenomenal. These individuals are used to being in the limelight and speaking to crowds.

I’m not a fan of Donald Trump, but I was quite impressed with his children.

Chelsea Clinton did a wonderful job offering a glimpse into the personal side of her mom.

There were sports stars who stepped out of their comfort zone and did a great job.

But the speakers who most surprised me were the “ordinary people”. Mothers and fathers who had lost their children to gun violence or while serving in the military, spouses of police officers who were killed in the line of duty who were asked to speak, individuals who were committed to certain causes, such as common sense gun laws or LGBT issues, and members of our military and police forces.

Most, if not all, of these people likely had little experience as a public speaker. And if they are like most of us, I am sure they were quite nervous in anticipation of their time at the podium.

These individuals were speaking to a large live audience and an even larger TV audience. They were most likely using a teleprompter for the first time. And they were going to talk about something that was quite personal and emotional to them.

Talk about baptism by fire.

Yet without fail, these individuals delivered. And I’m referring to both the Republican and Democratic convention speakers.

When the big moment came, and the country was watching, these individuals rose to the occasion.

Watching and listening to these speakers was inspirational.

It shows that when we care enough (and practice enough), we can overcome our greatest fears.

Congratulations to all the speakers, and especially to the “normal folk”, for a job well done.

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Jim Borden

Accounting Prof. at Villanova; happily married for 30+ years; father of 3 outstanding young men; vegan; interests: fitness, creativity, education, blogging, social media.

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