I belong to a networking group that meets on Fridays. Each meeting, we stand up and introduce ourselves. Each week, three different businesses share a short (5 minute) talk about what the business is about. To better know about the businesses, we are encouraged to make appointments with one another for a brief personal meeting. It is a wonderful group of people, many different professions are involved and all the participants seem to be of a very high caliber.

The Friday before this last one, a woman (I will call her Brenda) stood up to share about her business. She suffered from the single most common phobia, fear of public speaking. It is said to affect as much as 75% of the population. Public speaking is also considered one of the most valuable skills a person can have in business. Well, Brenda was unable to get through the entire 5 minutes of speaking time. She shook visibly and was near tears several times. What was amazing, was that through all of that, she had a tremendous and powerful story to tell. Her business is her passion and her goal is to benefit special needs individuals. Brenda touched my heart.

It was announced at the end of that meeting who the next week speakers were to be. I was one of the speakers. How fortuitous! Some days life just hands you solutions without even having to look. I called Brenda and she agreed to meet with me in exchange for my speech time. We met in my office and had an incredible session regarding public speaking. Brenda was open and receptive to the idea of overcoming her fear. Brenda is bright and charming. We worked together for a few hours. That’s it. One hypnosis session, we recorded. She had one opportunity to listen to the session again before Friday. Brenda left my office saying she felt self empowered.

I arrived on Friday, with great anticipation. How exciting for Brenda to be able to share everything she had told me about her dreams and goals with this group. I just knew when they heard all she hoped to do, they would love her as much as I now did. When I stood up to introduce myself, I did it using sign language as well as speaking. This was to support her upcoming talk. People weren’t sure why, but I tend to go against the norm in that group, so they played along.

I was announced as the first speaker. Brenda stood up, went into the center of the room and asked a powerful question. There were immediate responses. She played with the crowd, creating word pictures and spinning her tale. The group was mesmerized! (She was hypnotic!) Brenda went around the room, making eye contact and drawing everyone in. There was no back ground chatter, she had taken control of this crowd. When she finished her talk, the room burst into applause, giving her a standing ovation. Tears of pride and joy streamed down my face. Brenda had delivered her message and it was received. Imagine the difference for Brenda now that she has this level of confidence making her presentations for her business. Now, that she has the power to make a difference.

I was on a different plain for the rest of the day. It helped to create a great start to my weekend. Now, as I sit here this morning, I wonder, how many opportunities I will be offered this week to experience such amazing change. How many opportunities will you encounter for personal change? Will you take advantage of them the way Brenda did?