The Sport of Speech
How many smart, talented people sell themselves short because they are afraid to get up and present themselves and their ideas? Has that been you from time to time? No doubt about it, the fear of public speaking is one of the main fears that we have. It’s something that everyone suffers from one degree to another. As Mark Twain put it,
“There are only two types of speakers in the world. 1) The nervous and 2) Liars.”
Famous individuals like Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill, John Kennedy, even Donny Osmond suffered from crippling stage fright early in their careers and look what they became.
If Donnie can do it, you can, too!
The Sport of Speech is a different approach that can help you get over this fear, develop your natural communication skills, realize your true potential and have a great time doing it.
What if you approached public speaking not as something to dread but as a sport, a game that you could play the way you play golf, or tennis or go surfing? Why do people spend all kinds of spare time and money playing these sports? Because they are exciting, challenging and fun! Public speaking should also be exciting, challenging and fun. Let’s make public speaking more of an adventure like climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, or swimming from Alcatraz, or running a marathon. That’s the idea behind The Sport of Speech.
When you look at public speaking as a sport, you become an athlete in this new arena. To win, you need to train, practice and seek out the best resources and coaches. That’s what you’ll find at sportofspeech.com.
First of all, The Sport of Speech is not simply dedicated to high school or college debate clubs although debaters of any age can benefit from the lessons and insights we’ll cover.
The Sport of Speech is for people who want to win at public speaking, people who would like to not only deliver a wedding toast and not embarrass themselves but to actually “rock the room”. The Sport of Speech blog is where I’ll post things I’ve learned over the years so you’ll be able to benefit from my experience, the successes and the failures. I’m also going to post insights and ideas that I’ve come across from some of the best speakers, coaches and authors in the world of public speaking so you can learn from those people, too, and hopefully buy their book or sign up for their speaking course. We also need your best ideas and your stories about your wins and losses so comment, comment, comment. The sportofspeech.com website is going to be a place where you’ll find resources; links to the best books, blogs, websites, videos, podcasts and speaking courses. It’s also going to be where we, as a community, share information with the goal being to help each other be our best. Some of the ideas you’ll come across may seem a little crazy but I urge you to give them a try. If they don’t work for you, please say so in the comments section or tell us how they could be improved. If they do work, we would all love to hear about that experience, too. We are dedicated to making public speaking exciting, challenging and fun. We are dedicated to making you a winner at The Sport of Speech!
Steve Evans, Speech Enthusiast
I started my career as a Rock n’ Roll disc jockey which, as I look back, is still one of my favorite jobs. Being on the air, playing the hits, is about as much fun as a person can have. I became a DJ at the age of 20 because it looked like a fun way to make a living and, over the years, it far exceeded my expectations. At the time, I had no idea that radio would lead to so many other great opportunities including becoming the host of a morning radio show at KING Radio in Seattle and the host several television shows on KING TV, including “Living the Good Life” and “The Great American Game”.
I went on to become the national sell-a-thon host for Showtime Networks in Los Angeles. At Showtime, I transitioned to sales and marketing and was one of the original team that launched Sundance Channel in 1995 where I later became a VP of Sales.
I still broadcast a weekly movie report as “Steve the Movie Guy” for CRN Digital Talk, a national radio network and I’m also a member of Toastmasters, SAG/AFTRA and the Television Academy. I think that was my career, so far, in about 30 seconds.
As I look back, one thing stands out. The reason I was able to take advantage of the many opportunities that came my way in life was my ability to communicate, to get up in front of people and speak. If I had shied away because of a fear of public speaking, I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today.
I’ve always been fascinated by public speaking, the old-fashioned kind, in front of a live audience. I’ve been a member of Toastmasters since 2008 and was recently a Division Director for Toastmasters in Los Angeles. The point is after a life spent speaking in one form or another, I still don’t consider myself an expert, a “Master of the Game” so to speak. The fact is, I’m still in the hunt. I’m just like you, in search of all things that will make me a championship public speaker. This website is a place where we can get together, share ideas, our experiences and help each other make it to the top. “The Sport of Speech” is a site that I hope will inspire and help people become winning public speakers and presenters. This site will explore the exciting world of public speaking and presentations covering sales, corporate communication, comedy clubs, politics, virtual meetings, travel, TED events, self-improvement and anything else that looks interesting. It’s a place where we can share ideas and tips and advice and whatever else comes to mind to lift each other up and become the speakers that we were meant to be, speakers that rock the room!