Don’t Imagine the Audience Naked!

Naked Audiance 1.jpg

If you’re a nervous speaker as I once was, please please DO NOT take BAD advice, like ‘imagine the audience are naked’ aarrghh.

How many AWFUL ‘pearls of wisdom’ have you heard when it comes to doing something you dread?  

Well, this is one big fat myth I can bust for you when it comes to public speaking advice.

Please do email me with the terrible speaking advice you’ve been given (I love hearing your stories)

I remember at my kids’ speech-day at school in London, the head girl gave a hilarious performance about how she didn’t know how to prep for this, her big day at the podium.  I felt for her, she was very poised but clearly quite nervous. Seriously brave, she was only 13.

She went through all the advice her teachers, parents, grandad, and friends had given her including …

“Just imagine the audience are naked, and you’ll be fine”  

Of course, this went down a treat with an auditorium full of 4-13-year-olds!

She got a huge laugh (that’s a real coup for a 13-year-old, well done)

Her verdict.

“It doesn’t work!”

Just like head- girl, I have also tried imaging the audience naked. 

No, it doesn’t work.  

Although I understand the sentiment – ie – the audience are not scary, they are bare, naked human beings that you can laugh at, rather than them being strong powerful judges who may laugh at you.  

Beware - this is one massive distraction.

It totally puts you off, although if it makes you laugh, I’ll give it a tiny weeny bit of merit.

Here’s what will really help you – visualise something (other than a naked audience) that will actually give you focus and confidence.

Every time you visualise and imagine something in your brain you create neural pathways and your brain really does think it’s happening!  Your brain doesn’t know that what you are showing it isn’t actually true.  So don’t waste your lovely visuals on

A – Worry

B – A naked bodies!

Imagine this…… 

  • The audience is loving your speech
  • Imagine they are giving you a standing ovation because what you are saying is so powerful (arhhhhhh a naked standing ovation – stop thinking about it STOP!)
  • You’re feeling happy and relaxed on stage as you effortlessly crack jokes and make the audience laugh and smile

See that’s much more helpful than the naked image – ewe! 

The CEO, naked! Stop it, stop it you’re distracting me.  

Practical TIP

Do NOT think about the audience naked. 

DO visual how brilliant you are going to look, sound and feel like on that stage and capture that thought for a few seconds. Repeat,  as many times as you can!

I’d love to hear your public speaking tips.  I’m gathering the best tips for my book, so please do send me your tried and tested public speaking hints and techniques to You may be the chosen to be featured in my book, working title ‘The Perfect Pocket Guide to Glossophobia” (Fear of public speaking)

Esther Stanhope