Speaking From the Heart – engage your audience
By Mary Lucille Baker
Meditation was the beginning of my awakening in 1988. It prepared me for the nervous breakdown I “had to have” to get off the cycle of running my life on autopilot.
I began to ask myself questions. Who was I and where was I going? What brought me joy? I recalled being laughed off the stage at the age of 6. Wearing a fairy costume, no dress rehearsal, they put me in stockings. There I was, all excited running from the wings onto the slippery timber stage. Flat on my bum and big laughs from the audience, that was it for me, and the stage! Why did it take me more than 30 years to return? I had retreated into my shell and was living under the radar. My unconscious belief was that if I showed up I would be laughed at.
‘My comfort zone… was expanding… receiving positive feedback, I began to believe in myself’
Turning 40, recovering from that nervous breakdown and 12 months of soul searching, therapy and countless workshops, I began to re-create my life from what I wanted to do and be. My youngest son had started school and we were selling our house. I had lost my identity. I was a mother and a wife, and I had a house. Externally I had everything. Internally, I didn’t exist. I took up Interior Design and joined a singing group.
When the lead role was offered to me for an upcoming music theatre performance, I said: “No, I’m not a lead singer”. Driving home that night a little voice in my head went “buk buk buk, chicken, chicken – you really want to do this”. I auditioned; got the part. And although terrified at having to recall lines, I loved performing.
Ten years later, in a senior voluntary position at a prominent club addressing members on a weekly basis brought out my love of speaking to groups of people. The “mike” and I became friends. Personal development was ongoing. I continued to unlock and release my fears, anger and insecurities. I took a course on public speaking, appearing calm on the outside, trembling inside.
Patricia Hamilton asked me to MC at Conscious Living Expo. That opportunity opened up more MC gigs. My comfort zone on the stage was expanding. I was receiving positive feedback. I began to believe in myself. I listened to the signals I was receiving from my body and made a demand to surrender and let go.
One of the scariest things I did was to take up acting, which led to film making. Then Show Up Stand Out was born. Having unlocked my own talents I began teaching others how to engage an audience, supporting exhibitors in their presentations and showcasing people who are aligned with their hearts purpose.
ENGAGING YOUR AUDIENCE
A few of my tips for engaging large or small audiences are:
- Be present Show confidence
- Be Yourself
- Know your Stuff
- Clear the Past
- Ask three questions that require a Yes or a positive response
- Be willing to be vulnerable
You will find more tips and details on my website
As my MC business blossomed my vision became to connect people to their hearts and to each other on personal and business levels. Conscious Heart Connections was formed following short-term dating and longer-term relationship experiences that were missing a conscious connection. Gratitude, forgiveness, kindness, generosity of spirit, respect and allowance are some of the qualities required for a blossoming relationship. Judgment creates separation.