Secret #1 – People Want You To Be Interesting
It’s true, we live in a competitive society and the intentions of others don’t always include our best interest. Despite this reality, most people – and certainly the people we should be most concerned with – want you to be interesting.
It’s a popular misconception that others want to see you fail.
Think about it: If you have to stop what you’re doing in the middle of a busy week to attend a presentation, or a meeting or even just to take a telephone call, it will feel like less of a disruption if the information you are given is interesting and beneficial to you. Conversely, as a speaker, presenter or even disembodied voice on the end of the line, it is important to know that, at the most basic level, the listener is hoping for the best. For all intents and purposes, they are on your side.
Using this perspective – which is not just a positive mantra but an accurate assumption – has two very important and positive side-effects: it boosts confidence and helps you infuse your message with real value.
As you think about what you want to say, consider how your message may be of value to the listener and present from that angle. Working backwards from the desired effect helps to keep the message concise, meaningful and targeted to the listener.
To view the listener as a critic and an adversary is to mire yourself in emotional quicksand. It encourages a belief in the listener that their time is being taken, rather than the notion that the speaker is giving their time in the interest of offering the listener something they want.