If you’re wondering, “What can I do about my fear of speaking,” you’re already doing it. You’ve taken the first step toward learning how to manage your fear of speaking. You’ve admitted that you have this fear. Rest assured, you are not alone. Here are two statistics that should begin to ease your mind.
First, try a Google search on “The Fear of Speaking.” See how many “hits” come up in response to your search.
What did you find – which choice below comes closest?
B. 150, 000
D. 5, 260,000
Which came closest? I just searched and the number of hits for “Fear of Speaking”was 5,260,000. Pretty amazing isn’t it! If that’s how many hits there are, imagine how many people want to learn more about their fear of speaking. There are even more hits for “Fear of public speaking!” What should this tell you? You are not alone.
Second, if you conducted research to find out just how common the fear of speaking is, what would you be likely to find out? Choose one of the answers below – if you’re not sure, just guess:
B. 1 out of 2 people
C. 2 out of 10 people
D. 7 out of 10 people
Research consistently tells us that about 75% of people have a fear of speaking, in other words – a bit more than 7 out of 10. What should that tell you? Once again, you are not alone.
Should you do anything about it? Well that depends on how much the fear may be limiting you. Does your fear keep you from saying what you want to say and doing what you want to do? If so, perhaps you’re ready for the next step.
Since you’ve already admitted to having a fear of speaking, the next step is to find out just how much your fear might be limiting you. In other words, considering that you are in the group of seven people out of ten who experience fear of speaking, how do you compare to those other six people – closer to normal or closer to really problematic? Are you ready to find out?
Some time ago a respected researcher by the name of Professor James McCroskey developed a test called The Personal Report of Public Speaking Apprehension – abbreviated PRPSA. The test, now an automated survey, includes 24 questions. Once completed, the survey provides an interpretation based on the responses to the questions. The interpretation places the score along a continuum of mild to extreme. If your score is nearer to the mild end of range, maybe there’s very little you need to do to get your fear under control. If your fear is nearer to the extreme end of the range, you may want to consider some other options.
You can take the PRPSA right now if you like. There’s no fee and it’s confidential, in that we promise not report your results to anyone else without your permission. To take the test, just click on this link: PRPSA
So that ‘s it. You are on your way to managing your fear of speaking. First, you admitted your fear and second, you can now find out just how your fear of speaking compares to others.
If you would like to learn about the next steps, what you can do to manage your fear of speaking, take a look at our next blog post – What Can I Do About My Fear of Speaking? – Part 2.