Episode 42 | Building Confidence in Public Speaking with Coach Kathy Brooke


In this episode, Sarah talks to Kathy Brooke, a personal development coach, about how to build confidence in public speaking. The full episode transcript can be found below

They talk about how important being able to express yourself clearly is and  Kathy shares some tips and tricks to help you.

At around 10 minutes they talk about fear and stage fright,  and at 15:27 Kathy starts her suggestions of how to work on your skills.

Kathy recommends the following –

Nlp Workbook: A Practical Guide To Achieving The Results You Want
The Chimp Paradox: The Acclaimed Mind Management Programme to Help You Achieve Success, Confidence and Happiness

Find out more about Kathy  –

Listen to Sarah’s guest appearance on Kathy’s podcast


LISTEN To the Full Episode HERE


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Automated Transcript of Episode

Welcome to Ask the Therapist, a monthly podcast for everyone who’s interested in how our minds work building resilience through journaling, and all things therapy. I’m your host, Sarah Rees, a mental health nurse and CBT therapist with over 20 years of experience in the field of mental health. Hello, welcome to episode 42 of passion therapists. lovely to have you here. Today I’m talking with Kathy Brooke. Kathy is a personal development coach. And I was recently on her podcast, which is the Personal Development Podcast. We talked then about depression and seasonal affective disorder. But today, I got Kathy on my podcast to talk all about public speaking. And she is the perfect person. Kathy has a background in acting and musical theatre, and she coaches people to develop their confidence with public speaking. And this is something that I know I’m really keen to develop and work on. And so many of my clients are as well, because having to public speak is getting more and more important, as we kind of have to put ourselves out there a bit more on social media, or do presentations in the workplace, or just being in conferences and on training programmes where we have to raise our hand and ask questions in public forums. It’s so important and it could be just such a block to people personally and professionally. So today, Kathy shares some common fears about lots of strategies around overcoming those fears, working with limiting beliefs, and lots of straightforward tips and advice, that really practical and lovely simplicity to the mall. So you can start practising from today, and really up your skills and start working towards being a much more confident public speaker. I hope you enjoy do get in touch with us if you’ve found this episode useful. If you have any other questions, or just want to share your feedback, we’d love to hear from you. Enjoy. Hello, Kathy, welcome to us a therapist. Thank you so much for your time today.

Kathy Brooke  02:20

Thank you for having me. Pleasure. Yeah.

Sarah Rees  02:23

Can you tell us what is a professional development coach? And how did you arrive at becoming a coach?

Kathy Brooke  02:30

It’s such a good question. Because if you look online or LinkedIn, there are so many versions of development coach, professional coach, business coach, there’s so many coaches out there. So what I do as a personal development coach is I work with the individual. So that might be within a business or on a one to one aspect. So it’s looking at any hurdles, any issues, any mindset, confidence, hurdles or setbacks that you’re coming up against, and looking at where they’re coming from how we can get past those. So it’s looking at your development. So where do you want to be? And how are we going to get there? And it might mean, looking into the past and solving any issues, outstanding things that have come up there, but it’s all about how can we get you to where you want to be that professionally or personally, and what do we need to solve to get there?

Sarah Rees  03:18

Fantastic. So very goal focus that sound. Oh, so how does that happen? Then? How did you become a personal development coach? Oh, this Yeah,

Kathy Brooke  03:28

so it was such a I mean, I’m gonna compress this massively otherwise, a four hour but I used to be in musical theatre. I was in theatre professionally, did a couple of world talk bruises, and shows, bits and pieces pantos, that kind of stuff as a professional singer and dancer. And then I had a voice disorder. So I had a psychogenic voice disorder, which was kind of stemmed from from the mindset, which I had no idea about until I started it. And I had NLP therapy with a gentleman called Paul McKenna, not the Paul McKenna. But in my eyes. Absolutely. More and above the Paul McKenna incredible, absolutely phenomenal. He really opened my eyes to the power of mindset, thinking thought that was at the time, I was doing a lot of public speaking, coaching, presenting and singing a lot of voice coaching for professional singers. And it’s after I studied, I then went to study NLP and I realised a lot of the problems that people were coming up against were being presented through the voice, such as public speaking or presenting problems. Whereas I’d used a very voice centric approach, you know, breathing, tongue release, diction, things like that. But the actual fundamental problems were coming from the belief system. So what limitations what were the confidence blocks? And it wasn’t until I’d obviously gone through that process myself I realised Oh, my goodness. I’m skimming the surface here. I need to be getting deeper. So I went and studied NLP started coaching and started adding persons development into it. And then it just expanded into. It’s not just for public speaking, it’s for everyone. Yeah. And you work with people to help them develop public speaking skills, which is one of the reasons why I asked you to come on today. Because it’s, I suppose that’s definitely been one of my fears, and something that I’ve kind of started working towards more over the last few years. But why do you think it’s important for people to work on these skills? Honestly, just a full answer here, and want people to be able to say what they think and what they fail, because I feel that so many people don’t do what they really want to in life, they don’t speak up, they don’t ask the questions they don’t get where they really, really want because of fear. And if you know, what that dream is, what’s your dream goal? What’s your ambition, with, you know, we see so many are to talk here to present her to lead this to do that. And it’s such a huge hurdle. And, you know, for me on it on a personal level, my, my personal life was massively affected through not speaking up speaking my truth. And as soon as I kind of overcame that, it was very much a case of, I need to help other people do this, because it’s wild, you really unlock you. That’s the only way I can describe it as you unlock the real version of you.

Sarah Rees  06:28

Absolutely. And I like the way you say, you know, even just being able to ask a question at a conference or a training event. I mean, even that is just huge for so many people. And now with Don’t you think we have the video on social media? That’s the way it’s going, isn’t it? We are going to have to Pete speak publicly, so much more.

Kathy Brooke  06:47

Absolutely. And I’ve had so many clients coming to me, not so much about public speaking, especially over the COVID period, but about, I want to push my business, and I want to start doing LinkedIn videos, but I’m terrified of being in front of the camera. Cool. Let’s look at that. So not just speaking up, it’s also development, business development, personal development, all encompassing, really. And now of all the people you

Sarah Rees  07:11

work with, are there somewhere away speaking just comes naturally? Or is it difficult for everybody? That’s a really good question. So

Kathy Brooke  07:20

it again, it comes down to a belief system, I think. So there are a lot of people who find it very, very difficult as in crippling. And then you get, you get a little bit nervous and a little bit clammy hands. And then you do get people that just love it. They love the adrenaline rush. And I think that’s that’s the difference, isn’t it? I think it’s the idea of and as we as we know, our our bodies can’t tell the difference between adrenaline and excitement. Whereas some people in public speaking, they get that adrenaline rush and they almost send it down the excited, exciting route. So they thrive off it, they love doing it. So we’ve got less hurdles. Whereas a lot of people, they get that adrenaline and they go down the anxious oh my goodness, this is anxiety. This is fear. So they’ve decided that’s where your belief system is pulling you towards. But some people don’t have don’t have a negative experience or a negative belief attached to public speaking. So they do find it a lot easier. But I must say, even general public, I think it’s looking it sways towards more people find it nerve-wracking or worrying on the on the lower end.

Sarah Rees  08:39

Yeah, I heard I don’t know if this amount I can’t even remember where I read this that people would rather die than public speak. It’s like It’s like the one of the number one fears. Absolutely. And it’s the

Kathy Brooke  08:54

cover. Yeah, I know exactly what you mean. It’s one of those ones where the top three fears in the world. I think the first was public speaking. There was another one. And then there was dying was third, which, I mean, I’ve definitely died death on stage before I mean, so I don’t know if that’s it. That’s two in one really, isn’t it? But yeah, massive, massive because it’s so exposing and we’re so vulnerable ourselves out there because that’s it, isn’t it? But if we look historically, you weren’t supposed to go out of your out of your tribe out of your circle. You know, if your ancestor if we look at our ancestors we look at you know, right back to caveman days, if you leave your tribe your community, there’s a chance you’re going to be ostracised eaten by a lion and lost and eaten by god knows what else or you know, burned at the stake is that your for speaking up against something so, we are we have a predisposition to not go against the grain or not put ourselves out there because historically it’s not the best thing to do.

Sarah Rees  09:57

When I was researching this topic I came across The term stage fright, which seems to be to take the fear of public speaking just to another level, and I’ve worked with actors on this before. And it’s been debilitating. I’m talking about vomiting before going on stage. And I just interested if there’s a difference between stage fright and fear of public speaking, and what stage fright is, and how would you work with it? Is it different from public speaking?

Kathy Brooke  10:26

So it’s, it’s, again, it’s such a good idea and such a good question, but it’s the same stuff. It’s two sides of the same coin. So stage fright, performance, anxiety, fear of public speaking, it all falls under the same umbrella. And it’s that idea of being exposed, being vulnerable. So as an actor, we’re on stage we’re exposed, we’re in front of people, as an athlete, it’s performance pressure, public speaking, is the precious it all is performance, pressure, or that that vulnerability and that exposure. Now, with actors, and something I mentioned to you before, it’s it’s really hammered home because not only have we got the natural oh my goodness, the adrenaline rush, we’re going on stage we’re performing. But myself, I went to drama school, and it’s something that is very much drilled into you, which is the idea of, if you don’t perform 100% If you’re not amazing, there are the hungry actors, with home care agents that are ready to pull you down and take your place. So it’s not just the pressure you’re putting on yourself. There’s also that pressure of you must be incredible. And we have that drilled into us from when we were younger. And I think I was saying to you earlier the idea of I did one of my first contracts, which was in pantomime, which is supposed to be fun, it’s supposed to be enjoyable. It’s all about rapport. And I was so terrified that I wouldn’t do a great job. I spent evenings while the cast were all out you know, building relationships getting to know each other that you then take on the stage in pantos. it’s fun, it’s impromptu, you’ve got all those ad-libbing I used to sit at home and do a character analysis of a pantomime fairy. But that was a form of an exploration of stage fright because I was so scared and I had it drilled into me that I will be replaced.

Sarah Rees  12:15

So what are some of the common worries people have about public speaking I shared with you we had a little chat beforehand, and mine has always been I’m going to bore people? So I overcompensate by speaking as fast as I possibly can to entertain? Well, I’ve listened to that back, it’s probably not as entertaining as I think it is in my head. But what do you find common worries that people have when they’re, they come to you scared of public speaking?

Kathy Brooke  12:45

My favourite one that people say is I just don’t want to fail? And then I’ll probe and say, What does? What does that look like? What is failure? What what does it mean to fail? Stumbling, losing my train of thought? Almost like the deer in headlights idea. Asking a lot of questions. What if someone asks me a question? I don’t know the answer. What if What if I just forget what I’m saying and everyone laughs at me. They’re the main things we come up, then we get the other stuff such as my voice getting really tight, my voice gets really dry. And to be honest, it almost causes and effect with that stuff. That’s kind of the effect of the underlying issues. But the most common things I get is the idea of fear of failure, vulnerability.

Sarah Rees

And now I’ve had the worry of, and I think I’ve had it happen, I’m sure I’ve had it happen as well, where you literally any information leaves your mind, and you can’t think of anything

Kathy Brooke

again, think about fight or flight. So if you’re going to fight or flight if you’re about to get attacked by a lion, and you’re doing a crossword, you’re probably not going to finish it before running away. And it’s the same thing if you’ve got all this information in your head, you’re ready to deliver it. And then that overwhelming fear and your body all the blood rushes to the vital organs because it’s right to stay alive, stay alive, stay alive. And unfortunately, your recall and delivery and confidence is not vital in that situation.

Sarah Rees


that’s handy. It’s really useful. Great. Cheers.

Thank you. Yeah, the way I read it there is I’ve been taught to have a glass of water. So I can say, I just couldn’t get myself a drink, kind of take a breath and have a drink and by myself sometimes, and sometimes I think I’ve named as well and just said everything that’s not out of my head and hope that the audience is just supportive.

Kathy Brooke

There’s definitely something in that and I’ve spoken to people about this before there’s definitely something in calling out the elephant in the room. So for example, if you just talk and three seconds before you go on, you’ve spilt a bit of coffee on your top. You’re gonna be thinking throughout that whole talk is oh my god, everyone staring at the coffee. Oh my god. Oh my god. All we’re gonna be thinking about There’s definitely something in going on that stage and say, Look, before I start, I’ve had a small accident. And almost a joke of it, making it humorous, calling out the elephant in the room job done. That’s that that pressure is gone. We know it’s there. We know it’s dealt with. So there is definitely something in taking ownership of that because then it can’t be a problem for others because you’ve taken control of it.

Sarah Rees  15:27

Yeah, owning it. So, and I’m sure lots of people listening to this will be really interested in kind of developing their public speaking skills. Where would you recommend somebody start? You know, if you think that, you know, this is something you need to kind of develop and work on? Where can people start?

Kathy Brooke  15:44

I think I recommend they start at the end. So what is the goal? Because, again, we talked about public, I’d love to public speak. Well, what does that look like? Is it a stadium? Are we talking selling at Wembley? Or are we saying, I’d love to be able to, at a restaurant, if the food comes undercooked? I’d love to be able to say something as opposed to chewing it and spitting out in a napkin. So I’d say what is the goal? What are you looking to do? And then I’d also really, really recommend visualising and to feel that goal. What would it feel like if you did it now, before any work was done, okay, let’s say I want to do a big talk, a presentation, okay, I’m going to imagine it now. And I’d write down everything you feel oh, my goodness, anxiety, fear of this, I can almost see, you know, Bob in accounts staring at me and laughing and write everything out that you feel when you’re visualising that goal, because that is the information we need. We need to know what the hurdles are that are festering and kind of brewing away that are stopping you at the moment. So that would be the first place I would say, because again, we can say, oh, breathe, take a nice deep breath. But when we’re just putting a plaster, we’re putting a plaster on top of the underlying problem. So I’d say visualise the outcome, and write down everything you’re feeling.

Sarah Rees

So interesting, it really feels like what you think is sits behind all this fear is the belief system. And I’ve done a podcast a couple of episodes ago on all about limiting beliefs about how, you know, sometimes we’re not even aware of them, that I have this some boring thing, it took me ages to really uncover that a lot of work to get there because I just couldn’t figure it out.

Kathy Brooke

Yeah. And that’s, it is absolutely that. And I think, once you sit down with a list of things that have popped up, or I’m worried about this, I’m worried about that. It’s then time to go, right? Why? Where does that come from? And what’s the truth? So even if it’s a case of, you know, go really back to basic and using a red and green pen, and you write the red belief out, and then replace it with a green belief. So why, why do I believe that? What do I want to believe? Because then we’ve got something to work towards. So that’s where I start with it.

Sarah Rees  17:56

And what would you say people could do practically? Are there any practical things people do?

Kathy Brooke  18:01

Yeah, so if someone’s got a presentation tomorrow, and again, this, this all sounds great, Kathy, but I haven’t got time to start writing a journal. Before my presentation, I would say a couple of things. Number one, focus on what your audience need. So for example, with public speaking, so many people see it as them stood in front of an audience and an audience staring at them and X thing and wanting No, I want you to flip the whole thing around with public speaking. Now, when we talk about public speaking, this could be talking in front of two co-workers, delivering your findings, delivering research, it doesn’t have to be, you know, selling out Wembley, it could be anything, it could be giving a one to one appraisal, where you’re delivering the information. So what I like to think about instead of thinking, Oh, my goodness, everyone’s staring at me flip the whole thing round. How can you help your audience? Because we’re very, very good at helping people. If a friend came to you and said, I’ve had this problem with XYZ, what do you think I should do? We wouldn’t even hesitate to go, Oh, my goodness, right? Have you tried this? Have you thought about this or that we’re going to help? We would never go oh might not say that. Because what if you think I’m being silly. We just help them we want to help us. We want to help. And that is exactly what I’d like you to think about. Even if and I know this sounds brutal, and almost a bit counterintuitive. Even if you’ve got to make somebody redundant or you’ve got to give bad news. Ultimately, you are helping them because you can give them the news as opposed to them being found out or them being vulnerable or them being told by someone who genuinely doesn’t care.

Sarah Rees

It’s such lovely advice that and it’s taking you out of that threat system, isn’t it and thinking how can you add value and what can you how can you frame stuff and be as useful as you possibly can be also because a lot of kind of social anxiety that I work with. When people are scared they go into their head and it gets you out of your head and into really focusing outward getting your attention out of yourself?

Kathy Brooke

Yeah, absolutely. That’s why I definitely start with it.

Sarah Rees  20:05

That’s really useful. Thank you. And when I work with people who have anxieties and fears, the work is generally all about them, getting and supporting people to go towards their fear in a very graded way. But often the problem I have with public speaking is, there are not opportunities to practice in a steady graded way to build competence. It’s something that we generally, we just don’t have always have the opportunity to do. So it’s difficult to kind of build your skills in it before actually having to do it. Are there any ways around this but public speaking?

Kathy Brooke  20:43

So again, it’s, it’s that idea of being out of our comfort zones. So this doesn’t mean instead of public speaking, let’s try jump out of a plane and see if we can overcome that fear first. But it’s the idea of where else? Can we practice that? So for example, if, if when you’re shopping, you’d normally just have a normal exchange with the cashier. And you know, thank you very much that the other? Is it a little bit abnormal? Or a little bit out of your comfort zone to say, Oh, how’s your day going? Are you ready for Christmas? Or have you had a nice year? Or whatever that might be? Is that slightly out? Is that something you wouldn’t normally do? Because that’s a pretty risk free endeavour. So we could give that one ago. Even small things like, when you’re in work, do you? Do you ever stand up in front of everyone and say, Oh, I’m just gonna make a brew does anyone want one? That’s pretty risk free, but it’s still putting yourself out there.

Sarah Rees

Yeah, so doing it in a really small way. And thinking outside the box?

Kathy Brooke

Absolutely. Also think LinkedIn. And social media platforms are really, really good. Now these can be terrifying. But even speaking out a little bit more even it’s commenting to start with, and I’m aware that’s you know still behind the camera and behind the keyboard. Is that something that? I never really put my opinion out there? Okay, well, can you try something soft, that could be, you know, pretty risk free? putting something out there a bit further. Just thinking of things in your everyday life, where you could just push that little bit further, if you go to the gym, the gym classes or the social events. Could you put yourself on the second to frontline, as opposed to the backline?

Sarah Rees  22:17

Oh, that’s so useful. That’s I suppose I just hadn’t sort of thought out of the box with this stuff. But there actually are lots of opportunities aren’t there?

Kathy Brooke  22:25

So many ideas where you can just just do something that you might not, do I, I am one of those people 100%. If someone says Does, does anyone not understand that? we all know about 10 people in the class won’t understand and you just won’t put your hand up. So maybe, maybe you’re not ready to do that. Maybe you’re not ready to do that at all. So you might not say anything, but you might then go to the coach or who or the course leader or whoever and just say I’m sorry, I didn’t want to put my hand up. But I actually don’t understand that. You’ve still done it, you’ve still gone out of that comfort zone, but you’ve just you’re edging as opposed to jumping, you know, headfirst in? I think so things that are pushing you forward.

Sarah Rees  23:03

And confidence is a central part of public speaking. Do you have any advice around building confidence?

Kathy Brooke  23:08

Yeah, I think that pretty much the same thing, in terms of pushing out of our comfort zone in risk-free ways. But also a really nice one. And another this links and something we spoke about before is also have a look at people have a look at people that you think are confident. And what do they do? What are their mannerisms? Because the classic quote, of success leaves clues is a great one. So look at whether you find competent or successful, and what’s different, what did they do differently? Can you let’s say that they’re operating at a 10. Can you take a few of their techniques and use them at a three or a four? So it’s not too crazy for you, but you’re just starting. The other thing with confidence, which I would love to make sure is out there. When people talk about not being confident. I always say to them, okay, is there any benefit to you not being confident? And the classic response I get is, well, it stops me from being arrogant. People believe that you’re either unconfident or you’re arrogant, and not confident, then they must be arrogant. And even listening to this. I know people be thinking, Oh, absolutely not. You can be you know, there’s a whole spectrum before you. It’s not black. But when we’re in it, some people fear confidence because they’re worried about being the other end of the spectrum.

Sarah Rees  24:34

Yeah, it’s really interesting. isn’t thinking about that a bit more softening that and is that actually the case? Yeah. Is

Kathy Brooke  24:41

that really the truth? Yeah,

Sarah Rees  24:43

yeah, completely. And a quick question. This is one for me rarely, so I find I say so all the time. You might not have noticed because I’m trying to calm down the times I say so. And I know how people have things that when you start one of them Things I do a review, obviously I do this podcast, I have to listen to myself speak. And you start to hear things that you say all the time that become really annoying. And I know some people kind of say, or are there any tips for pulling away from this when you start to hear the irritating things that you say, again and again and again. It’s so automatic how just stop it?

Kathy Brooke  25:25

This makes me giggle because I’m a nightmare for this myself. So I feel like such a hypocrite saying this. And, you know, you know, people listening to this, I’ll be like, Oh my god, yeah, you do you say that all the time. But the idea behind this is, there’s two reasonings or theories behind ers, ums, sos. The first one behind ohms, it’s normally asked a question. So someone asked us a question, and we it’s almost a filler. Now, a lot of theory behind this is the fact that when we were younger, when we were children, if our parents or someone in a senior position, shall we say, or a position of authority asked us a question. They want an answer. They want an answer right away. So if we’re not sure, now, as adults, we give a filler, which is almost us saying, I will respond, I will respond. Yeah, we’re just buying time as a child, and it’s unconscious. We don’t know we’re doing it. But as a child, if you know, if your mom or dad says, oh, you know, where have you put that? Or why is the dog tied to the Christmas tree? Or we’ve got to answer where’s your sister? Or what are we doing with this, that the other we’ve got to answer? As adults we don’t. And I think it’s about the first thing is about thinking, you know, I don’t have to operate from that threat base system, I don’t have to operate. So just taking that time. Now the other side of it all is, um, so, things like that. And again, this all this resonate with, these are definitely the idea of rushing when you public speak. If you’re rushing when you’re speaking, you’re almost acting like a printer. So you’re printing the information off as quick as you can. Yet, the computer, your brain hasn’t had time to type it out. So it’s trying to take it out really, really quickly. But you’re printing it so fast, that at some point is got to go errrrr. There’s a little bit of a jam, because your brain doesn’t have time to get all that information in order to then be printed. But that printer is just going and going and going. So we’ve errrr and that’s where that loss of train of thought comes in. So a really, really, really nice technique is going back to the breath. So looking at the idea of taking an inhalation through the nose, right down to the lower diaphragm s a really big breath into the tummy. And then just allowing yourself to speak, as you’re breathing out, just relaxing, if you’re asked a question, take a second to breathe in. Before you start a new phrase, take that second to breathe in. So not only does that relax you and it helps reduce the cortisol that’s kind of stress hormone, and takes us away from fight or flight. But it also allows our brain the computer to go. Okay, I think I’ve got everything in order. And let’s press print. So buying yourself time, really.

Sarah Rees

Yeah, and we talked just before this episode, and that is the only way I mean, I’m still quite quick as a speaker. But when I’ve really tried to work on this and does voice coaching, they got me to record myself speaking as I’d like to speak, which is with no breaths whatsoever. And then to record myself speaking, very slow down, and breathe as well, which was a new thing for me breathing and speaking, and then listen back. And actually, it sounds so much nicer when you breathe because other people’s brains can keep up with you as well. And even from a vocal point of view, the way that your vocal folds work, it’s very much like when we were younger, and we used to put like a blade of grass between our thumbs and blow through it to make that reed, almost like a clarinet. So your vocal folds work by the air or the breath coming up from the diaphragm, vibrating at vocal fold level, and that creates the sound. If you’re not breathing, if you’re not breathing in or out, we get a really pinched sound here and you can already hear in the voice it becomes quite tight. We found yourself kind of wanting to swallow needing a glass of water getting a lump in the throat, you might find your pitch going a bit squeaky and a bit higher and it being a bit tighter. Now that’s not your voice per se, it’s not your voice that’s broken it is the fact that breathing is again, if you try and play a clarinet, but you’re not actually blowing it, nothing’s gonna happen. And that’s pretty much what’s happening with the voice though. It is great for moving away from the eerrr, that kind of confidence as well. But it’s also absolutely fantastic to give you that lovely rich resonant tone when you are speaking.

Sarah Rees  29:56

Are there any good resources that you’d recommend for people to read or watch or any books or anything?

Kathy Brooke  30:03

Yeah, so I, and again, I know it’s public speaking and talking. There are books like The Talk like Ted and confidence in public speaking books. They’re absolutely fab. But again, I really, really believe that, that 90% of people who come to me are worried about the pitching, it’s not that stuff. That’s the top-level stuff. You know, imagine your audience is sitting there in their underwear it’s not going to help that underlying belief. So I would really say, and I know, it’s slightly, slightly dated now. But the Chimp Paradox, Steve Peters, just to give you that, understanding, you’re actually in control of your thoughts? Because I think that’s number one is a lot of us think that we’re not in control. It just happens, oh, this always happens to me, no, wait there, you’ve got a choice. And I think that book, Chimp Paradox, Steve Peters, is a fantastic way to be able to separate your actions and your thoughts, just to learn that. And the second one, which I found absolutely fab is the NLP, the NLP workbook is a blue book, we get it on Google or Amazon or wherever, the NLP workbook purely because even if you’re not interested in NLP, there’s an area on limiting beliefs on that idea, which I think it’s just great to read that section and learn that. Why? Why do I think this? Why do I have this belief? Because once we take ownership of it, we can do something about it. So their thirst, that well, they’re the two resources, I would say. And then the third thing, and a little bit of an odd one, you asked me here? Is there any resources that I recommend for people to read or watch? Watch people. So somewhere along the way, we’ve learned that speaking of speaking out, and we often learn this as children, because the school playground and the classroom can be quite a cruel place. And if someone speaks up, and they get picked on, we learned in that environment, not to be out of our comfort zone, not to make ourselves vulnerable. But start watching people who do that. Be that in the office environment, be that on a zoom call, watch people who ask a question, who public speak, we’re not asking, you know, I’m not looking at celebrities. I’m not. We’re not analysing Obama’s speeches, even though I think that’s, that’s totally credible because he’s fab. But looking at these real life, people who are speaking, speaking up having conversations, hosting talk shows, and look at what happens and have a look at when they go out of their comfort zone. So when they speak up, when you’re on your business zoom call. And again, Bob from accounts speaks or what happens. Because our minds think, Oh, my goodness, I couldn’t do that. Because I fail. I do all this. But as soon as we start watching that, oh, well, nothing happened. We’re starting to learn in the real world, that we can go out of our comfort zones, and the world will not implode, I think use those around you. Because ultimately, that’s what you’re bothered about. That’s what that vulnerability and fear base is coming from. So let’s get in control of that

Sarah Rees

So interested and remember and I read a book, I think I think it was called standing out from the or owning the room I think it was and they talk a lot about the Obamas and you can google Michelle Obama’s first time she ever did a speech and then kind of five years later and she’s at that is the difference is phenomenal. But she even when she was new to it, though it because she’s new, and she’s really trying there’s it you really feel very warm towards her and when Barack Obama was doing his you know, he’s like, just fabulous at speeches. But he was doing it about four times a day for months and years. So you know, a lot of practice there. But I love your advice. It’s really keeping it simple and a lot about slowing it down, thinking about your belief system and breathing.

Kathy Brooke

I also think you hit the nail on the head there with what you said about Obama practice. Because you do as many courses and webinars and read as many books as you want. Unless you’re repeating and learning and repeating and repeating. It isn’t going to be an overnight fix.

Sarah Rees

Okay, is that in front of people? Or do you think kind of you should like do it in front of a mirror? Or would you do that?

Kathy Brooke

When your public speaking or when you’re practising and you practising. Yeah, I genuinely believe that in front of people, because that’s where a lot of the belief system comes from. In front of the mirror. We’re safe. We’re not vulnerable.

Sarah Rees

Yeah. Okay.

Kathy Brooke

Unless your parents walk in or your other half walks in other thing, what on earth is going on? But doable? It’s, you know, we can practice all of those things. It’s not until we step on the stage that all the variables change, and that’s when people go to fight or flight.

Sarah Rees  34:49

It’s really useful. Thank you. And one of the last questions I asked all my guests is, if you could go back to your 15 year old self, what would you say to her

Kathy Brooke  35:00

I always love this one because I know full well, that I was such a I don’t want to use the word geek. But as I explained with the Panto, I was so end goal focused in a sense of everything has to be perfect. I think I’d say to her to enjoy the process, For me I think that everything was stressful, even. GCSEs, a levels, even drama school, when you close to being the most exciting time of your life, it was just me, how can I be the best? Right?

Sarah Rees  35:33

So you just got your head down and didn’t enjoy the process?

Kathy Brooke  35:37

I don’t feel like I really, you know, I didn’t go to parties. I didn’t go anywhere. I didn’t really do much. Because, okay, obviously, but I didn’t do as much as the other students did. Because my head was so no, if you’re going to be the best, you need to work the hardest. And I’d say to 15 year old me chill out. Just chill out.

Sarah Rees  35:56

Yeah. And there’s learning in that isn’t there? Like, you know, yeah, that’s all of like, thank you so much. And oh, people are gonna find this so valuable. And how can people find out more about what you do, where are you on social media? How can they follow you or get in touch with you? What are the best places and platforms?

Kathy Brooke  36:15

So I use LinkedIn a real lot because I just love the format of being able to do live sessions. I do a Monday morning mindset every Monday, and every Wednesday, just 10 minutes on a Monday to get everyone prepared for the week and a session on a Wednesday afternoon with a guest. So that’s LinkedIn and that is Kathy with a K, Kathy Brooke Coaching and my website again, Kathy Brooke coaching, and emails, Kathy at Kathy book coaching, and pretty much on websites, all social media bits and pieces, feel free to drop me a message or book a call. And yeah, it’d be great to talk to anybody.

Sarah Rees  36:50

And I will link to everything in the show notes. And thank you so much. I’ve really enjoyed it. And I’ve, I’ve made some notes, so I’m excited to dive into that. Thank you for listening to Ask the Therapist. For more information about the CBT journal, visit my website at Sarahdrees.co.uk. You can also sign up to download your free guide to building emotional resilience delivered straight to your inbox. You will then also receive regular newsletters where I share my blog posts, podcasts and tips and strategies for better mental health and psychological resilience. Don’t forget to review and subscribe to the podcast and you can also share episodes on social media using the hashtag ask the therapist.

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