Emma Watson – Presentation nerves


nervous woman biting nails

Emma Watson, the heroine of the Harry Potter series was appointed as a U.N. Women Goodwill Ambassador earlier this year.

She recently gave an impassioned speech on feminism and gender inequality at the U.N. headquarters in New York.

When I first listened to her speech on YouTube I couldn’t help but be a little distracted by the slight trembling in her voice.

She was clearly nervous

Who wouldn’t be addressing the esteemed delegates of the United Nations?

The very thought of such a challenge is likely to make even the most experienced speaker quiver.

Did that noticeable tremble:

Impede her performance?

Dissuade me from listening further?

Dilute the impact of her message?

Absolutely not, here’s why

As an extremely talented and much loved actress she is undoubtedly a remarkable young woman.

It takes great courage to be able to address such an influential audience on such a topical and global issue.

Her belief and passion for ending gender inequality is unquestionable.

Her message is eloquently delivered from the moment she stands to speak

“Today we are launching a campaign called HeForShe. I am reaching out to you because I need your help. We want to end gender inequality—and to do that we need everyone to be involved.

 This is the first campaign of its kind at the UN: we want to try and galvanize as many men and boys as possible to be advocates for gender equality. And we don’t just want to talk about it, but make sure it is tangible.”

Despite her nerves, Emma Watson delivered an excellent speech to the UN

It was intelligently structured and beautifully paced.

She had a powerful message to share .

Whilst she had notes on the lectern to help her, she neither needed nor used them. She knew exactly what she wanted to say.

Such was the strength of her passion

It takes a lot to be a great speaker and one of the many critical ingredients is congruence.

Every ounce of the speakers being has to be in harmony with the words coming out of their mouth.

In this case, it’s highly visible that Emma Watson believes and means every word she says.

She speaks with such intense sincerity

Whether she’s addressing an issue that you are interested in, agree with or not, it’s almost impossible not to be drawn in by her candour.

Some may say that as an actress surely it must come easy to her to speak in public in such a way.

The quiver in her voice tells another story

It’s not easy but her passion sees her through.

Concluding a rich and powerful speech, she closed by saying:

 “I am inviting you to step forward, to be seen to speak up, to be the ‘he’ for ‘she’, and to ask yourself if not me, who? If not now, when? Thank you”

It’s no wonder she received deafening applause and a standing ovation.

There is a lesson in this for all of us

Regardless of the size or profile of our audience, if we deliver our message with passion and belief it will always triumph over nerves.

If you need help presenting:

– Book yourself onto a powerful public speaking course.

– Invest in some really good one to one public speaking coaching.

– Get yourself some excellent presentation training

Image: Courtesy of Canva.com

Watch the video here:


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