Practice till you do it well, not till you understand how to do it well:

In presenting, learning takes place in the body.  This is something I know and you know it, too.  But in preparing for a presentation, it’s easy to stop at “Ah, I got it, I understand what I need to do…”

I’m on a little bit of a tear about rehearsing right now, so here goes nothing…That’s not enough.

I’ve said this before a million times in coaching sessions and I’ll say it again here: Just because you understand what you have to do to be a good water-skier, doesn’t mean you can get dragged behind a boat at 20 mph and make it work the first or even the 7th time.  Seriously, tips and tricks are useless when you want to actually be good. In fact, they’re dangerous because they lead you to think you’ve got it handled, when you don’t.  You have to go beyond tips and understanding, and do the practice to get it locked.

This is why, as a coach, I don’t do “tips and tricks.” It’s a long way between the brain (understanding) and the body (the doing) but one thing can shorten the distance and that’s rehearsal. So, once you understand what you need to do to be better, or even good on stage, do it.  Get on your feet, walk it, hear it, and say it.

You’ll stumble, and that’ll be confusing because you thought you understood what you needed to do.  Yeah, so does everyone else. The difference between being bad and being good in front of the room is practice. There’s no way around it.  Why?  Because learning takes place in the body…at least this kind of learning.  

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