“I don’t like your attitude” shouted my high school teacher as I was evicted from the class and demanded to appear in front of the Head Master. He gave me a complete dressing down and I swore from that point onwards to improve my attitude to school.
Having the right attitude or the right state of mind is essential for anyone speaking or training in public. Here’s six tips on how.
Remove all concerns
Remove all concerns from your head. We’ve all baggage of some sorts in our head. A lingering argument with your partner, a major mistake you made yesterday or the loss of a deal can all affect your state of mind. The trick is to adopt mindfulness and empty the head so you can focus on the now.
A favourite Dandy Warhol’s number from the early noughties talks about having a trap door in the back of my head. I use this metaphor to empty out all the thoughts that are bringing me down before I perform on the stage. It works.
On the subject of the Dandy Warhol’s let’s get into music and the effect it can have on your state of mind. As I write this, I’m listening to my State Changer Playlist on my phone. This playlist consists of a number of songs, tunes and tracks from my collection that each control and influence my state of mind. I’m 33,000 feet above the Himalayas having presented in Bangladesh and I just fancied a boost of energy so I’m listening to my playlist.
Music is an anchor. The listening can bring back a state of mind which you either experienced when you listened to the track or you embedded into the tune at a later date. Anchors do this. Anchors can be any sense – hearing something, seeing an image in your head, a physical touch on your body, a smell or a taste. They all relive a state of mind for you.
Collect anchors for each and every state you need. I use my playlist as it has an instant state changing capability and I love my tunes. Right now I’m listening to “I am the Resurrection” from the Stone Roses voted the number 10 guitar tune by Q Magazine. It revs me up so I can go out into the audience and “give ’em large”.
Among my playlist I’ve:
- The Raven by the Stranglers for extra energy
- Good Morning Britain by Aztec Camera for inspiration
- One Day Like This by Elbow for concentration
- Nothing in My Way by Keane for Perseverance
- Glory Days by Pulp for stimulation