How to Overcome Self-Consciousness

self-consciousEveryone feels a little self-conscious from time to time. Even those outgoing funny motivational speakers you see up on stage doing all kinds of wacky things experience those awkward, uncomfortable moments when they feel like everyone's watching and judging.  But it's when those feelings are more the rule than the exception that they can undermine the quality of your life and make you question everything you do or say.  It's no way to live a happy, fulfilled life. And when I was working as an actor, going out on lots of auditions, I seemed to experience more than my share of that debilitating state of mind.  Most particularly in the audition process.  

No one on the planet feels more self-conscious than an actor walking in to a room of Broadway directors, producers and writers to do a musical audition.  Everyone IS watching them, right? And judging. And frequently scowling. It's a hideous, horrific place to be honest, natural and sing from your heart.  I was awful at it. Until, that is, I went to graduate acting school at the FSU-Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training and attended a class on musical auditioning.

It was taught by the brilliant and talented David Brunetti, a masterful song-writer, musician, teacher and vocal coach in Manhattan.  He told us that from the moment we walk into the audtion room, we should…



He pointed out that when you are feeling self-conscious, it's because you have positioned the spotlight above your own head, pointing directly at YOU. You are thinking about…YOU.  He suggested that you take that spotlight and refocus it on the OTHER people in the room. Look at each person, what they are wearing, who they seem to be. Try to figure out if they have children, have they had a tough day, what nationality they are, what relationships they have to each other. If you keep the spotlight on THEM – you will forget to think about yourself! 

You can see that in one of those historically uncomfortable social situations where you know no one, you could use this idea to feel a whole lot more relaxed and at ease.  And when you do start a conversation with someone, keep the focus on them. If they ask about you, answer – and then turn the conversation back to them. They will LOVE you for it! Everyone loves you when you seem to find THEM fascinating!

From your happy, singing motivational speaker Linda Larsen





Motivational Speaker Linda Larsen, CSP has been described by meeting planners and audiences as "hysterically funny," and "riveting." Known for her ability to connect on an authentic and emotional level with audiences, her spontaneous sense of humor, and her engaging and powerful stories, Linda is passionate about sharing ideas to help people live their finest, best, and most productive lives. Her riveting and true story of being kidnapped and held hostage at gunpoint by an escaped convict, and the strategies she used to escape, will give people the tools THEY need to rise above any of life's toughest challenges, to communicate more effectively with THEIR difficult person, and to find creative solutions to THEIR problems. To book motivational speaker, Linda Larsen: 941-927-4700

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  1. Clap, clap, clap, clap, clap!!!!!  Love thist post Linda. I have never heard of this perspective to consquering self-consciousness. It's wonderful. It's almost like taking the self out of self-conscious! I really do agree with you, that turning your focus outward will do nothing but serve you well – in life and in business!!! I'm going to share this right now. It's great advice – and not just for motivational speakers!

  2. People love it when they see you are interested in them.  I agree with you and if you don't know what to say when you're in a conversation with someone, just ask them a question about their favorite subject – themselves!!!

  3. Oh boy!  Is this where I can use the line "Do you come here often?"  Teehee.  No, really, I agree that this is THE BEST way to become less self-conscious.  I'll never forget the tough love I received from a friend when I was bemoaning this self-cnscious feeling:  she said, "Don't flatter yourself.  No one's focused on you.  We get to stare at them!"  Your advice is much more loving, thank you!

  4. Linda, what a beautiful post that will benefit so many. Reminds me of my Mom's advice when I was so NOT excited about attending yet another new school during my teen years. "Rather than be self-conscious, go and be interested in someone else. Make a friend." You are both truly delivering awesome advice.

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