Articles tagged: psychology of public speaking

The first article of the Cognitive Bias series defined cognitive biases and introduced the core idea that cognitive biases impact both the speaker and the audience.

This article examines the Spotlight Effect. As we’ll do throughout this series, we define this specific bias and offer several everyday examples. Then, we’ll study how the Spotlight Effect affects both the speaker and the audience. We’ll conclude with strategies to mitigate these impacts.

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You may think that you are a sensible, rational thinker. You likely believe that you’re open-minded, objective, and someone who sees the world as it is.

Unfortunately, your brain is playing mind games with you.

In reality, while you are incredibly intelligent, you’re susceptible to a swarm of cognitive biases which constantly pull you toward irrational thoughts and judgments.

This article is the first of the Cognitive Bias series — a collection of articles which examine cognitive biases, describe how they impact you and your audience, and explore practical strategies you can use in response.

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The act of speaking in public and the process of improving one’s speaking skills are wrought with conflicting emotions, exhilarating highs, and frustrating lows.

There are times when applause makes you think you’re the greatest speaker in the world, and there are times when the silence of the audience makes you want to crawl into a hole.

In short, the mental game for speaking in public is a jumble of thoughts, experiences, and emotions.

In this article, we apply the wisdom of the Six Thinking Hats to provide a framework for sorting out this jumble and gaining useful perspectives which can help us improve.

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Garr Reynolds, Nancy Duarte, and Cliff Atkinson are the authors of three hugely popular books on presentation design in the last five years.

What else do all three have in common? They all point to Richard E Mayer’s Multimedia Learning as recommended reading for presentation design.

And I agree.

This article is the latest of a series of public speaking book reviews here on Six Minutes.

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