Scared of Choking Your Speech? Read This!!

Scared of Choking Your Speech? Read This!!

The following chapter is from the Armani Archives - Soft Skills Edition

‘What if I choke during my 1st speech?’

Then you choke.


Some of the best speakers from my time during Toastmasters choked their 1st speech.

When you mess up, you realize the world doesn’t end.

After making this realization, you feel a sense of relief for your next speech.


This is not a green light to not practice beforehand.

But if you gave it your best effort to prepare & the nerves got the best of you, do not beat yourself up.

I guarantee that choking is not a big deal like you think it is.


‘How do you know?’

Because I am speaking from experience.


‘So, what was it like?’

Well, this was my 1st ever Toastmasters meeting….


I went to just sit on my ass & observe. To be honest, I went because I was hungry & thought they were going to have toast. But nah. There were at least 75 people there. Many people that I knew from my school.


After seeing all those familiar faces, I sat all the way in the back.

I was praying that I did not get called on stage.

I had massive speech anxiety then.


*the meeting began*

The table topics started (random people get called up & give an impromptu speech about a topic).


Not kidding.

I was the first person called.

The table topics master thought he was being slick by calling the people in the back.


I was straight-up mortified.

Walking to the front of the stage felt like the longest walk of my life.

Felt like a nightmare.


Well, I finally made it to the front.

I picked out a random topic from the hat.

Everyone eagerly awaited to hear me speak.


‘What was your topic?’

A maraca…

The fuck was I going to say about a maraca for 2 minutes?


I had to think of something.


The thoughts began racing in my head. I faced an army of eyeballs. My face began to get hot. My stomach tightened. I began trembling. Heart began pumping on turbo speed. And my throat started to get super dry.

Oh no… I was choking.


I stood up on stage for a few minutes and could not say a word.

Eventually, the Toastmaster told me to sit down in a very sympathetic voice.


‘Were you embarrassed?’

Ya, very.

I saw a few of my friends scattered in the meeting giggling & making jokes. Felt awful.


But that moment was the best thing that ever happened to me. I turned that shame into fuel. I used that fuel to analyze the world’s best speakers & learn from them. Took a 6-month break to simply learn. The epic choke job kept me motivated.

Needed to figure all this out.


6 months later, all my friends forgot about the choke job.

But I didn’t.


I signed up for 3 Toastmasters & went to every single meeting.

Got in tons of practices with different audiences & different topics.

Recorded myself, analyzed, fine-tuned & went back to give more speeches.


A few months went by, and I finally began to figure it all out.

My speech anxiety turned into excitement.


Eventually, I built enough courage to run for a leadership position.

The position was for External Vice President.

This role would have me spread the Toastmasters message.


‘Did you get the position?’

Yes, I did.


That position allowed me to bring many people who suffered from speech anxiety to the Toastmasters world.

If I could figure it all out, then I sure as hell wanted other people to know they could figure it out as well.

You just need heart.


The moral of the story is that my journey in public speaking was born from a choke job, just like many other speakers.


Never be too hard on yourself for messing up.

Be hard on yourself for quitting.


That simply will not do.

You just need to show up & show out.


With time you will blossom into the speaker of your dreams.

But it all begins with taking the stage.

Just 3-6 speeches are all it takes to tackle the world’s #1 fear.


You got this.

Don’t tell yourself otherwise.


For More Tips to Improve Public Speaking Skills, Checkout the Armani Archives!

– ArmaniTalks 🎙️🔥

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