Back in 2014, Forbes Magazine contributor Nick Morgan wrote: “In public speaking, perfectionism is the enemy. Embrace instead the imperfect, the human and the lively. Embrace passion, not perfection.”
This is excellent advice and something I consistently impart when coaching my clients to sound their best. Here are six solid reasons to revisit your drive to be a perfect speaker:
1. Striving to be the perfect speaker is paralyzing and will contribute toward your freezing up vs. sounding authentic when speaking to others.
2. The very act of speaking in public is risky behavior. Therefore the likelihood of being a perfect speaker is highly improbable.
3. Perfectionism contributes toward replaying an event (and any mistakes) over and over in your head. This usually ends up being an unproductive use of your time.
4. When we’re totally absorbed with perfection we tend to expect nothing less than perfection from others. As a result people may feel burdened.
5. Those who feel compelled to speak perfectly are less inclined to seek assistance. By doing so, this becomes self-limiting in terms of their own improvement.
6. When we’re driven to be perfect it may distance us from others who are not similarly drawn to this trait.
Let’s not confuse perfectionism with striving for excellence. Striving for excellence makes sense however believing that you have to be perfect makes no sense. In this situation you may be your biggest obstacle!
Always remember that the best speakers focus on speaking from their gut with passion and purpose. After all, communication is always about those listening to us.