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Tips on Enhancing My Personal Presence
By Jenn DeWall Confidence and Leadership Coach & Keynote Speaker & Trainer.
Have you ever met someone that lights up a room when they walk into it? We’ve all wished we were that person who commands attention in a crowded room, who has charisma and can easily influence others. Well, I’ve got great news for you! Personal presence is a skill that can be learned and enhanced with practice!
Take a media presentation class. Take a class, join a group like Toastmasters, or other networking support group. Get experience speaking in front of others and get feedback from others about your presence. Practice is so important when it comes to commanding attention. Learning to communicate clearly and engage an audience will also make it easier in everyday situations.
Watch what you say. Sometimes we minimize our own presence with our word choices and delivery. Do you undercut your message by softening it with filler words like “kind of,” “maybe,” and “it’s just”? Do you undermine your credibility by prefacing ideas with negative statements like, “you probably already know this,” or “this might be a dumb idea, but”? When you are nervous, do you stumble over words or fill the space between thoughts with “ums” and “uhs”? These verbal crutches can really detract from your presence. Consciously practice avoiding them and noticing when you slip into those speech patterns.
Focus on others. It may seem counterintuitive, but one way to truly enhance your personal presence is to pay attention to others. Being genuinely interested in people and their lives and listening to what they have to say immediately enhances your presence. People are always drawn to someone that makes them feel like their thoughts, lives, and feelings are important.
Look in the mirror. Personal presence is also at least partially based on appearance, whether that’s fair or not. You don’t have to be a supermodel, but if you want to enhance your personal presence, take time to make sure you look the part. This includes keeping up with grooming, choosing appropriate outfits, and your posture and facial expressions. Notice how you look (and how you feel) when you stand up tall, with shoulders back as opposed to slumped over with one hip out. Become conscious of how you are standing or sitting throughout the day.
Keep learning. Read books, articles, and blogs about leadership, communication, and self-confidence. Stay informed about current events and new developments in your industry. Learning new things will keep your mind sharp, and staying informed about topical events ensures you have something intelligent to say when the subject arises.
Work with a Coach! Working with a coach can quickly help you enhance your presence. A good coach can offer you insights and valuable feedback about your personal presence, as well as tips to improve. They can also provide a safe space to work on building your self-confidence, which is vital for presence.
Enhancing your personal presence sometimes requires pushing beyond your comfort zone. Don’t be afraid to try something new and see how it feels—part of growing as a person is taking risks and being a little vulnerable. Personal presence comes from being present, authentic, and engaging with others. Like any other skill, it has to be practiced consistently to be improved.
Want to work on your personal presence? Reach out today!
Jenn DeWall is a leadership and career coach, leadership keynote speaker, facilitator, trainer, and podcast host. Jenn is a Millennial leadership expert based in Denver, CO.