Sharing Block

Dear Allyson,

I work for a land conservation organization (Open Space Institute) and protect land in the Hudson Valley and beyond. I created a blog called Conservation Now which has morphed into poetry and photos. Here is a link:

Writing about what inspires me and public speaking both turn me on. When I share my poetry or speak to an audience, an inner voice tells me I am being pretentious and preach. Reciting poetry, I become anxious about people’s reactions. Are they judging me? Do they approve? Is it any good? My ego is at play here and I end up choosing avoidance, sharing my work only on rare occasions.

What can I do to gain confidence in sharing my creativity?

Terrence Nolan


Dear Terrance,

Empowering your “voice,” whether in writing or public speaking means being so authentic in your communication that others are moved by your words, inspired and touched on a deep level. People well-up with tears from the most authentic sharing.

The problem of ego is solved if the delivery of heart-felt personal truth is filled with altruistic intentions.
Practice. Take a public speaking class. Feedback make improvement happen fast.
Share from personal experience rather than from righteousness or pretense. Use personal examples.
Practice privately in front of a mirror.
Use pronouns sparingly and only very intentionally. Use  more “I” and “we” than “you” and “your.” More inclusive.
Never tell others who they are, how they feel or what they should feel. This instantly implies the inverse and turns audiences off.
Read Mastery [in your 20’s or 30’s] or 48 Laws of Power [in your 40’s on] by Robert Greene.
This book will guide you through the roles people play and how you can engage with personal power.
Not everyone is called to write inspiringly or to touch the hearts of an audience. Most avoid.

Being extraordinary means listening to your inner voice, the one telling you to be a leader in speech and writing, even though you may not yet be proficient. Powerful extemporaneous speaking or reciting poetry in public can influence the collective consciousness and conscience. Becoming excellent is worth the practice and the pursuit.