So what happens when an athletic, but introverted young man with a lisp and stutter is so shy he won't speak to his friends and classmates? You know, the one where the teen is almost completely introverted that he would not even speak to his teachers in class.
Watch or listen now to the remarkable story of today's guest, the man who went from being afraid to communicate, to the man who now teaches others to communicate confidently and connect with their audiences. Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the Peter George story!
Peter believes that everyone should be able to confidently share their knowledge and experience. As a public speaking coach and trainer, he specializes in helping executives, attorneys, entrepreneurs, and professional speakers be calm, confident, and credible® every time they speak in public — whether they’re speaking on stage, presenting in meetings, or selling to prospects. Over the past 17 years, Peter has helped professionals from around the corner to those in Fortune 100 companies develop into speakers who understand how to craft and deliver presentations that engage, persuade, and inspire, ultimately helping them increase their impact, influence, and income.
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Hello friends. I'm David Pasqualone and welcome to this week's remarkable episode, the Peter George story!
This week, Peter is a passionate public speaker. He coaches and trains fortune 100 executives. He had. Public speaking events all around the world. Even during the pandemic, he's renting books, he's run companies, but he takes all of this insight and experience.
And in this episode, Conveys knowledge of how we can [00:01:00] overcome our fear of public speaking and not just to disregard it, but how to channel it into energy to make our speaking even better. He has all sorts of tips and illustrations and just great common sense that he imparts to. In a way that's easy to understand and apply.
So check out this awesome episode of the podcast, make sure you're taking notes as long as you're not driving and then apply them to your life. One thing we forgot to mention, I'm not trying to sell you, but after you see Peter's passion and how talented he is. You're going to want to speak with him. If you need help speaking publicly, or even communicating within your organization, Peter's offering a special 20% off to all of the remarkable people podcast community.
So reach out to him on the web. Make sure you tell him, you heard about us. You heard [00:02:00] about him on the podcast and he'll give you 20% off. If you decide to work with him, you don't have to, for this episode, it's 100% free gold material. It's going to make you a more effective speaker and give you a more fulfilled life.
So I'm David Pascoe alone. Welcome to the Peter George story and both Peter and I can't wait to hear how this has helped you and affected your life in a positive. Have a great day, check out this episode and we'll see you soon.
PART 3 E73 Peter George Public Speaking How Anyone Can Learn to Communicate Confidently and Connect with Your Audience: Hey Peter, what's going on, brother? I am doing well, David, how are you, man? I'm doing great. And I am excited for our episode. I just told our listeners all about you in the intro. So now, man, it's your time. Thank you for being here to share your story like we've discussed and how our program goes and our listeners now, in case there's somebody new, Peter's going to go through his story from childhood, his upbringing, [00:03:00] what he's adapted to and overcame what he's faced and conquered what he has achieved and just smashed through.
Right? So he's going to take us through his life and this remarkable journey, but he's not going to tell us just what he did, but he's going to share with us the practical steps of how he did it. So we can too. Then at the end of the episode, we're going to transition into where's Peter today and where's he going so we can help him get there.
So it's a beautiful circle of love and helping you. With that, Peter, please share with us your remarkable story. My friend. Thanks, David. Well, I grew up in Providence, Rhode Island, and it's a great place to grow up the city. There was you name it. We had it ethnicity, race, whatever. It was just a wonderful place to grow up.
And I grew up with awesome parents. You know, it's, it's funny. My wife who didn't grow up in such a such a setting always called me Opie [00:04:00] or calls me Opie. When I, we talk about my childhood and OB being a reference to Ron Howard, the great director and writer who played Opie on the Andy Griffith show in the, I guess, late fifties, early sixties.
And he just had that nice little upbringing life. And that's what I had other than I grew up with a list and. And when you're nine years old in a city, growing up with a has started, it's not the easiest thing. And I had great friends who are very, they really weren't concerned with it. It didn't bother them at all.
Bothered me a lot more than it bothered them. However, that doesn't mean other people you go to school with, who aren't necessarily close friends, whatever, don't look at it differently and you have a great opportunity to be picked up. Fortunately, I wasn't, as much as I was afraid of that, I wasn't because I did two things fairly well.[00:05:00]
I kept my mouth shut and I became fairly proficient in sports. I played football, baseball, and hockey, so I could play sports year round. And if you were good in sports, you didn't get picked on simple as that. And that was my drive to become better in sports. And I could still keep my mouth shut. One of the things I learned David though, was, was kind of cool now that I look back on it is if I talked about music sports, and as I got older business, I really didn't stutter.
Not much anyway. And it's much like the people you see who stutter, and then they start to sing and they don't stutter at all. And as soon as they're done singing, they start stuttering again. And that's what happened to me. So it became, I spoke about very few things to other people to try to get by.
However that may man, I didn't communicate very well with people as a whole. I was not all [00:06:00] that well, all that good at communicating because I tried to avoid it. And that's how I went through school. I wouldn't answer teachers in class. I would stare them down and they knew why, but they, and I'd asked them not to pick on me and I.
Call, I tell them, call on me and I won't answer want to see that I've done my homework before class, after class. That's great. And it was a tough way, not as bad as some kids had it, but it was a tough way to go through my young life and that progressed and progressed and progressed. And then I got into the corporate world.
I got out of school into the corporate world and I didn't have a choice. And I had a wonderful job with a company that everybody would recognize one of the largest companies in the world. And it was a tremendous, tremendous job, tremendous opportunity, better opportunity than I thought I'd ever have.
And I had the option of losing this job [00:07:00] or becoming a communicator and learning to present to people. And I got help. I got help to have me become a better public speaker, if you will, better presenter. And here was the funny thing. When I got that help, what I learned David was I had been studying communication my entire life, just from the other side of the coin.
I was finding every way to communicate with people. Without speaking. All I had to do was add speaking to it. I became a fairly good writer because of that. And I've written numerous articles that have been published in the hundreds. Actually, I ended up owning a publishing company, founded that, so that in 2005, all these things happened with communication that I never expected.
If you said to me, when I was young, if there's one thing that you do not ever want to do [00:08:00] in life, what is it? And it would be communicate with people. Funny thing is you can't get through life without communicating with. Yeah. And isn't that crazy? They say that more people are scared of public speaking than death.
So, yeah. I don't know if, as a public speaking coach and a speaker for more than 30 years, I don't know if I believe that per se. Yeah, because I get it. We w we're going to do that much more often than we're ever going to die. We're only going to die once. And so, and you don't think you're going to die for the most part, we don't think we're going to die in the next 30 minutes, but we might have to present in the next 30 minutes.
So we have to fight with those nerves fairly often depending on the person and the situation. I always, I always like to think of this, what I tell my clients. Yeah. You might think you're nervous about public speaking and that more so than death, but if you're falling 30,000 feet out of the air in a silver tube, you would much rather be on a stage.
Yes. You're in a dark [00:09:00] alley with a gun to your head. You would much rather be in a conference room. Yeah, that's very true. Very true. So when death stares us in the face, it's the number one fear. No doubt, but it probably does rank ahead of things like snakes, which a lot of people are afraid of in spiders, which I'm terrified of clowns.
Clowns are actually high up on the list, which I'm terrified of. I have no idea why, but I am, my daughter would scream. Like, I mean, she wasn't afraid of everything to this day. She has very few fears, but when she was a child, she would scream and terror when clowns are around and she had no bad experiences, just that psycho face.
Yeah, I I've never had a bad experience with a clown. I just think they should be wiped off the face of the earth.
I have no idea in spite is right along with them. And I know spike did serve a good purpose, but Nope, [00:10:00] not for me. That's also when I went and started my own company. And when I, when I left the corporate world and started my own company, my first company, I learned that even more so where communications was necessary in the corporate world, it was essential for me in my own company.
And that's how I became a speaker, was my company grew fairly quickly and people wanted to know why people in the industry that we wrote about people in the publishing industry wanted to know why. And I was asked to speak on stage. And that was, although it's similar, as far as theory goes, that was completely different to me than speaking in a corporate boardroom or a corporate conference room.
And I went well, truthfully, I was going to say, I went to get help for that. Truthfully, I tried it on my own. And one of the things I realized [00:11:00] that three years is going by, and I wasn't that much better speaker than I was when I started. So I went and got help and found someone who just I jelled with. And he helped me immensely and not just the, the theory and the science, but the art of it.
And that's what I base my training on for people as well is, you know, there's science to it that goes back to your childhood, but it also goes back to about 900,000 years ago, living in caves per se. Now, what would you, oh, I'm sorry. I was going to say, and it was just getting that help that made the greatest difference probably in my life to tell you the truth.
Okay. And we're going to get in. So the audience knows we're going to get into tips. So when you're listening to Peter and you're connecting, like I have that same issue, I feel the same way. He's going to get into tips to how to help you present and communicate and speak. But I want to jump in and out a little bit here, [00:12:00] Peter, when you're discussing communication types, like there's the public speaking on a stage, there's the boardroom speaking.
There's interpersonal. What are the types of speaking? Like if you were a generalized in some main categories, I know there's probably dozens, but what are the main types of different speaking that people engage in communication? You know, there's all different situations, but I don't believe in and others will disagree with me.
I don't believe there's all different types. Whether you're speaking across the desk to one person, 10 people in a conference room, a thousand people in an auditorium or anywhere in between. It's the same thing. It's all based. Communication is communication. Now, if, if you're speaking to a thousand people in an auditorium and you don't have a 30 foot screen next to you, well, your gestures are going to be a lot bigger than they would be if you were sitting across the desk from one person.[00:13:00]
But other than that, the art of communicating, the science of communicating are the same subtle differences, of course, but feel it fairly much the same. Would you say there's an emotional aspect then? And what I mean by that is if I stood in front of an audience of 10 or a thousand, it would make no difference to me.
But if I go in front of a camera by myself, Frozen. Like, I just couldn't even smile. So what is the psychological aspect of it's all in our heads and that doesn't make it any less real if it's it's our reality, it's real. And there are a lot of people say, you know, I'm good with one, two or three people, but I can't speak to a hundred while the funny thing is you can't speak to three.
You can't speak to a hundred people. You can't speak to a thousand people. You can only speak to one person. Now that three people can be listening. A thousand people can be sitting there listening [00:14:00] and interacting with you and engaging with you. But when we try to speak to more than one person, it bothers us.
And we don't understand why, but it's because you can't and you don't want to David, if there were three people in the room with you, I'd still be using the word you, which what's great in English. That means you singular. And that means you all four of you sitting there. If I said to you, you know, how many, how many of you are from from Florida sitting there?
How many of you were in Florida? Well, all four of you say, well, that's me, but it's a little different. If I said, are you from Florida? It's a difference in mindset. I'm having a conversation with one person, no matter how many people are sitting there are you from Florida is different from how many of you are from Florida.
Funny thing is [00:15:00] the four of you don't have that answer. You'd be like, I don't know. David, are you from Florida? Were you originally from Florida? We don't have that answer. All we can do is answer for ourselves. So when we try to go out and speak to a thousand people or a hundred people or five people, we doing ourselves an injustice by trying to have a conversation with all those people.
It doesn't mean you zero in on one and let 990 9:00 PM. Not being engaged, but you speak as if there's one, you communicate with one person all the time, and that's a key factor. It's a mindset factor. And it's even the choice of words factor that makes a huge difference. That a lot of people don't even teach a lot of people in my profession.
So always speak to one person. It makes a world of difference. So then go back to your story. Now you're in business and you're challenged to learn, to communicate and speak, not just from a stage, but to [00:16:00] motivate your people, to tie them into the vision, to get them on board. How did you do that? You said you met with a man that you jelled with.
Where did that go? And what were the steps of how you overcame this? He broke it down. He broke it down to the simplest parts. And I, and I can't tell you how much I appreciate that, that it was no longer this overwhelming. Obstacle that I didn't think I could deal with. He just broke it down. So instead of being a wall, it was just a series of small speed bumps.
And that once you go over this speed bump, there'll be another one that you have to deal with, but it won't be all that difficult. And it was things like you're only speaking to one person, it was being totally prepared. And that's key. I think in most things in life being prepared, I want people say off and I used to say it.
Yeah, but I don't want to prepare. I'm afraid I'm going to sound [00:17:00] rehearsed. Well, that's equivalent to saying, I want to drop $500 to get a front row seat. If not a thousand dollars, it's got a front row seat on Broadway and I don't want the actors to rehearse and prepare because I want them to be authentic.
No, you don't. You want a good show. They have to rehearse by themselves and with each other. It's the same thing. So it was taking it bit by bit. David that made the biggest difference to me and why things were happening were huge in my mind, that's the science side and the art side is developing yourself to meet that science, but in a way that works for you.
So you can constantly engage people. And the greatest piece of information, the greatest idea that he gave me that I now preach to anybody who'll listen is it's not about you, the speaker [00:18:00] ever. It's always about the audience, whether that's one, 10 or a thousand, it's not about you yet. We make it all about us.
So when I went to him, it was all I'm nervous. I don't like doing this. What if I forget, what if I screw up? What are they going to think of me? What if they don't like me? What if I can't engage? What if I, what if me? What if I, what if me and he looks right at me and says, what makes you think this is about you?
And he was right. It wasn't about me. So now I know as long as I prepare, I do my due diligence. I study my audience, who I'm talking to, what they want and need to know what my point's going to be. And then rehearse that rehearse my opening, which helps a [00:19:00] great deal on a lot of levels. Especially with nerves, rehearse my opening, rehearse my conclusion, rehearse my points in between, not memorize it, but get to know it, get familiar with it, get to internalize it.
Then my job is to engage, not present, but engaging. And knowing when it's about the audience that becomes so much easier.
Yeah, that's so true. And I think for me, I never had formal training, but what you said about you practice and you rehearse the intro, that was a huge key to me. If I can't get people to laugh in the first 30 seconds, it's a disaster. But if I can get people to laugh, like right off the bat, I don't even think twice about nerves.
Is that how you are and how most people are? Yeah. It's the first, [00:20:00] well, it's 30 seconds. How long I'll ask you this and different people will say different numbers, but how long do you think you have to engage an audience when you walk out on stage or in a conference room or wherever? It might be seconds.
I mean, three seconds. Yup. Scientists who will some will say seven, some will say 10, but the ones that I look at a lot say three and a study I read many years ago. And I can't tell you where it's from. I could only guess, but so that when a fourth, a fourth, fourth grader walks into school into her classroom for the first time in the school year in three seconds, she's decided whether the next hundred and 80 days of school are going to be good or bad based on meeting the teacher in three seconds.
And that's why we have sayings. Like don't judge a book by its cover. Don't make a knee jerk reaction because we do it's what our brain does and we can try to stop it, [00:21:00] but it does it mostly at an unconscious level, as opposed to the conscious level, when we bring it to the forefront and our minds and make it a conscious decision.
Sometimes we can stop that. But the underlying unconscious decision is often made in that short of time. So. I give my clients advice on how to lengthen that time long before they walk out on stage, how you can increase that time before they even see you. And that's a great piece of advice for them because not only does it work scientifically, but it's the mindset for them, but the opening is key.
And I said that it's key on several levels. Not only do you, have you decided this is how I'm going to engage them right away, almost instantly, but when you're walking out and your adrenaline's flying and you're nervous and you're sweating, your heart's pumping and all these things that happen to virtually all of us, if you know how you're going to start, that [00:22:00] helps calm your nerves.
If I'm walking out going, I've got 1.8 seconds to figure out how I'm going to start. Now, I'm a nervous wreck and it's also not going to be good. But if I've rehearsed it, I know. Here's the funny thing. This is the great thing about the brain. Your brain's primary objective is to keep you alive. Barna its primary objective is to keep you alive.
So to protect you when you're walking out on that stage and you're that nervous, or you're walking into that conference room and you are that nervous your brain, no matter how much you rehearsed it, that opening line is going to say, Hey David, I got a better idea. This will keep you safe and alive. And you say something else.
That's not nearly as effective. So I teach my clients all the time. Don't unless there's something humorous that happened, you stumbled. That was a big noise, whatever. [00:23:00] Don't change your opening because your brain's going to tell you it's got a better one at the last second. And what are the odds of that?
Yeah. Yeah, it just doesn't happen. So when you were running your business and you met this gentleman and he's teaching you how to communicate, what were some of the changes you saw interpersonally within your life and in your business? How did it grow?
I got into the publishing industry without knowing the first thing about publishing. This was in 1990. When computers personal computers were just evolving in what they are. I'll tell, I'll tell you what our first graphic computer, not our main computer, but our first graphic computer had four megabytes of memory, not gigabytes.
Four megabytes of memory and use these large [00:24:00] external side quest drives that were all the way up to 88 megabytes, a whopping 88 megabytes that cost you for that $350 each, what they were and, and you use these platters. And so that was the 1990s, which wasn't all that long ago. I didn't even know how to turn on a computer.
When I worked in the corporate world, our admins call them secretaries back then, but our admins did all of that and they did a lot of it on IBM com on IBM typewriters. So that world who's just coming into play. And I had imposter son. What am I doing in this industry? I don't belong in this industry. I don't know the first thing about this industry, but it's something I wanted to do.
And I built it from the ground up and it took me three years to get my wife, to leave her corporate position and come work for me. And I worked for her the next 12 years, she ran a [00:25:00] great company. I was traveling a lot speaking and she ran the day-to-day company with the employees and the like, but to answer your question, the biggest change in me was confidence.
That's the change and that permeates other aspects of your life. And when I work with my clients, I'm going to teach them public speaking and presentation skills and all of that. That's not, that's not my, my goal. It's their goal. But what they get is generally a level of confidence. They never thought they could.
And that's a superb thing to get. You don't get that in a lot of ways. And that's when I know I've done my job, not when they become better presenters, which they will, if they do their homework, they will. But when I see a difference in them, and I'll [00:26:00] give you an example, I worked with the president of a large company and he brought me in and I asked mark, why do you want to do this?
What made you call me? And he said, I'm perfectly, I'm a perfectly good presenter for the president of the company. I'd like to be a better presenter. So I could, for one, I'm a CEO of a large company and we started working together and we did our process. And at the end of the process, he said, we were talking about the experience.
What do you learn? How he's going to apply it and all those things. And he said to me, Peter, I hired you to teach me better public speaking skills. And you did. And I appreciate that. He said before. Never be able to thank you enough for what's the level of confidence you instilled in me, which I didn't, it grew organically in him, but that was one of the greatest compliments I've ever had in my career because here's a very successful man.
55 years old has achieved a great deal in life, president of a [00:27:00] large company, worldwide company. And he said it was a level of confidence. He didn't think he'd he had, and that was pretty cool. That's what my clients get. That's what most people get from this, whether it's my clients or they work with someone else, that's what they should be getting.
And you can tell them that ahead of time. And they're like, aha, it's just cool to watch it happen.
Yeah. And that rolls over into every aspect of your life. Not just a profession. So if for the people listening now to get started at home, what are some tips you have that you've seen work time and time again, if you're like here's 1, 2, 3, here's three things to start implementing for better communication.
And what would you rank? We've touched on two of them. It's always, always, always about the audience, always research the audience. Even if you're speaking, you walk [00:28:00] into a room and they say, Hey, David, what would you like to share a few words instantly, think, who am I speaking to? What do they want or need to know in this situation?
What is the situation? Is there a challenge, an opportunity? What is what's going on? And what's my point. And a lot of us forget what a point is. That's that's another one is get to the point. A point is something you believe in a point is something you could. Point isn't taxes, a point isn't lower taxes.
A point is with lower taxes. I believe we can do this. That's a point lower taxes is topic. So incidence thing, what's my point. And how am I going to speak to that? So it's always about the audience and do that research, whether it has to be a split second, or you have time in advance after that, we already talked about it.
Rehearse, rehearse, rehearse, rehearse. [00:29:00] When you think you've rehearsed too much rehearsal more time, and there's a ways to go about rehearsing. It's not just reading your presentation. That does virtually nothing for you. Actually, if you just sit there and read your presentation, so movement helps you remember, so you have to get up and speak it out loud.
So it's all about the audience rehearsing. And when it does come to you, because I can tell you too, I'm blue in the face that it's all about the audience, but we always have that in our mindset. What's happening to my body or what's happening to your body is excitement. We call it fear. I'm nervous. I'm afraid of presenting my blood pressure goes up my heart pounds, my hands get sweaty.
I can't remember things. My, my mind's going around like a roulette wheel where the ball doesn't drop [00:30:00] happens to everybody. But what happens when your excite excited your heart pounds, your blood pressure goes up your hands, sweat. Your brains starts to go a mile a minute. It's the same reaction. It's just the context we're putting it in.
So where we say we're nervous, it's actually the same reaction as. The only difference is that mindset. So switch the mindset is easily done. No it isn't. But if you can do that, that's great. I'll give you an example. Friend of mine, my daughter's godfather, when his two boys were young, they love to go on roller coasters.
He hated rollercoasters. So they would go on vacation and there'd be a six flags around or something like that. And the kids, the boys would be take us on the roller coasters, take us on the roller coaster. [00:31:00] He was petrified. And then he realized that that same feeling one day when they said, let's go on the roller coaster, he was like, yeah.
Let's. And he had the same feeling, but now he was excited to go on the roller coaster. You said that feeling never. It's just how he looked at it. And his boys are grown up and living their own lives in different states. When he and his wife go on vacation, he looks for an amusement park and he goes on a rollercoaster.
And he said, that feeling has never changed from the first day. They said, let's go on the roller coaster. And he was petrified to what he experienced is now you just changed his mindset and how he interprets it, just how it's interpreted. Interesting. Very interesting. So [00:32:00] speaking isn't about us rehearse a ton and switch our minds on it.
Yeah. I'll give you one more example of that, that we all can see if you like sports, let's take, let's take football in this instance, they doing them Patriots Patriots. Although I was. Last time for Brady. I got blessed. I got the best of both worlds. I'm from Boston Patriots, lifelong fan, but I respect Brady and now I live in Florida.
So it worked out. I wrote it for him. I'm glad he won so football. You can see it time. And again, as the Superbowl rolls around, they'll interview people and they say, Hey Jim, what's it going to be like, when that day comes, he goes, oh, I'm going to be, yeah, I'll be nervous. My adrenaline will be flowing. But once that first play, that first hit happens.
It's another football game. You get right into the, the, all the hype is [00:33:00] gone. Everything's gone. It's another football game and your professionalism snaps into play. So they're nervous. These are the professionals have been playing the SWAT since they were eight years old. They're the best in the world.
They're playing in the biggest game in the world, watched by hundreds of millions of people. And they're nervous. If they can be nervous at their level, then we certainly can be nervous at ours, but they know that that nervous energy will instantly turn into positive energy, the energy they need, they absolutely need to perform at the highest point.
So when people say, should I take beta blockers to calm my nerves? No, you need that energy. If, if I meditate or pace, before I go out on stage or in that conference room, will that lower my nerves too much. I'd love to see it. It's not going to, but you don't want it to, you want to have that energy when you get out on that [00:34:00] stage, when you walk in there.
Or speak in church or wherever it might be. You want that energy, you just have to funnel it from nervous energy, into positive energy. It's the same reaction to your body and your brain. Yeah. It's kind of like, I don't know why whenever you're talking, it reminds me of judo. Like you're using the enemies energy against them.
So it's like you're taking all those fears that scene tries to make, break you down with and you're converting it to your victory. So it's like communication, judo, what you're teaching over here. That's awesome. Well, you know, there's that, there's some bravado involved too, but I'll, I'll bring you back to when I was about 12 years old, my part of my family was from no way, Maine, just Northern Maine out in the middle.
And we, which if you're not, if you're not from that region of the country, a lot of Maine is nowhere. I love Maine, but there's some really [00:35:00] remote areas. Oh yeah. Once you, once you hit Bangor or anything north of that, Trees and some small towns on the coast, but I'm sure people from Maine will appreciate my description of their state.
It's absolutely. Yeah. It's a gorgeous state. We have, we have listeners from over 80 countries, Peter. That's why I'm just trying to give a quick summary, but it's at the top of new England. It's separated from Canada, mostly by water, but it's, I mean, you can connect in some parts, but it's gorgeous, but there are no winter, winter, lots of snow cold.
And I think for a long time during like the eighties, it wasn't like the number one cash crop weed before it wasn't me. It wasn't, I mean, it was really a remote place to go. So anyways, that's, that's Maine is a beautiful place with great people, but it's not like a metropolis. Let's just say that. No, not at all.
And, well, my FA that's where my mom's side of the family is from and she was born up there and we would go [00:36:00] back for family reunion. They had family reunions maybe once every five years. So we went up there every summer, but about the fifth year, there would be a family reunion. And my great grandmother who lived to be a hundred and I was 18.
When she passed away, she would gather all the great grandkids around at one point during the reunion, just bring them aside away from everybody else and say something just one line and then walk away. She had this innate country girl wisdom of, I will give this them this line. It may help them. It may not, but they'll interpret it, how it will help them.
So at about 12 years old, she takes us great-grandkids over to the side and there's about 15 of us. And she said, if they look that close, slap their face, and then she turned around and walked away. No explanation, no nothing. If they look that close, slap their face and I'm a 12 year old boy saying, what does that [00:37:00] mean?
I have no idea what that means and I forgot all about it. And I got a little older and I realized, oh, I think she was talking to the girls. Here's a country girl. If the boys get that familiar, slap them, you know, if they get too close to what I, as an adult, when I look back on that, I think if someone criticizes you not critiques, you, that's different.
That's done with care and the want to help you. But as someone criticizes you the heck with them slap their face metaphorically. So there has to be some of that too. If you know, you've done everything that you need to do, you've researched the audience. You've developed a presentation, you've rehearsed that presentation.
You've done all that you can do to make it good for them. To engage them, to have them walk away with more information on our call to action or whatever your purpose is in that particular instance. If you've done all [00:38:00] you can do, and someone is going to criticize you, which someone is, you're not going to make everybody happy the heck with them, you've done the best you can do.
When I go out to speak, I know I've done the best I can do. Either people who are in this world who can do better. Definitely, but I've done the best I can do. And I've given all of me for that particular situation. And if someone wants to criticize that, there's nothing I can do about it. And there always will be.
Yeah, a wise man told me in college, he said, like he said, you just do your best and accept your bad. And that was profound to me. Like it was always never good enough. Never good enough. Never good enough. And he's like, Dave, just do your best and learn to accept your best. That's it. I tell my clients never.
And I have some who do never strive for perfection. [00:39:00] Strive for connection. That's good.
Perfections. Never going to happen, but connection can and should.
So where's Peter. Today, you went through this journey. You learn to communicate, you learn to speak. You've been on the influence organizations and people within the organization. Right now you're talking to a global audience, but where are you today? What's going on in your life. Personally, you got kids, grandkids, what's going on with your business?
Where are you headed? How can we help you get there? Well, I'll tell you where I am and if anybody can help me get where I want to go, that's fantastic. But where I am, I live outside of Providence. I've lived in other states. I always came back to Rhode Island and I live outside of Providence with my best friend, my wife, that's trying to 31 years.
Every day when I'm [00:40:00] done with this first thing I'll do is call her at her office. She owns her own company. I'll call her at her office and tell her about this. We, we just both love interacting with each other and when we're not together, we want to tell each other here's what, just what happened in my life.
That was awesome. So she is my best friend. That's not a line. And I am blessed for that. I can't, can't think of a better way to spend your lifetime than with your best friend. I have two children, not from my wife from a previous marriage, but I've two children. One lives in Florida. One lives out in the Seattle area, both have children.
So I have grandchildren. And there they've grown up to be wonderful adults, great parents. So that's pretty cool. And and me, like I said, I just have a great life. I am absolutely fortunate. Blessed pick the word to have the life I have. Was it all constructed knowingly by me? [00:41:00] Nope. Not even close. I fell into a lot of fortunate holes walking along, just dropped in a hole and, oh, look at that.
How that happened. I built my publishing company up, but it took off to the point where it did totally by mistake. It was a happenstance. I just happened to meet someone who had another publishing company that was larger, more experienced than mine. And we hit it off. And at one point she called me and said, would you like to buy my company?
I'm retiring. I couldn't have planned that, that just came along, came along from doing the right things. Once we met. Keeping the relationship going, being kind to each other, asking for advice, whatever it might've been doing, the right things in life, but that was just happenstance. So when I look back and reverse engineer my life, most of the things that got me to where I am today happened because I was active.
I got out, met people, whatever it might [00:42:00] be and kept those relationships going. And that's been very fortunate. So my life is pretty cool. I have no arguments about my, my life whatsoever. I think every day's a great day, no matter what it brings. And yes, I had operations. Both my parents died. One died. My dad died at 30.
When I was 30 years old, he died fairly young. My mom's passed away. My older brother, my only sibling has passed away. So I miss them, but they had great lives too. No matter how short my dad was, he loved his life and his family. So I always look at that. I've had a fantastic life. I'm 63 years old when we're recording this, it'll actually be in less than a week.
I'll be 63. Hey, congratulations man. Happy birthday. Thank you. And it's been 63 if not exciting years, interesting years, including when I was eight years old, I didn't mention that I got hit by [00:43:00] a car and wasn't supposed to make it through the night they brought in the family, the aunts, the uncles, and the light to say, go.
I wasn't supposed to make it through the night. And at eight years old, you don't look back, you don't sit there and go, wow, I got a second chance at life. You just don't look at it that way. It's just what's happening. And I look back now and go, yeah, you know, for the last 55 years, I shouldn't have been here.
I really shouldn't have. So for whatever reason, I'm here by whatever grace that I'm here. It's been pretty cool. And I hope I help people. And you said, how you can help me. My number one thing in life is to help people. I love to help others achieve things. And I, and I'll tell you where that comes from. Is this video, is this going to be on video or just audio?
Oh, this is video audio. The majority, the majority of our audience are still audio. But if you're listening now, audio, you may want to check out the YouTube. All right. If they are watching [00:44:00] it on YouTube, they can see over my other shoulder, they can see over my shoulder a fighter. And that was my dad's fire helmet.
And one of them, I have all his fire helmets, but that was one of them. And that's all beat up. And that's the old style that goes back to the sixties when they were metal. And they had brass on them in the plate, in front and everything that said what engine you were from and parts of it, missing parts of it uh, bent that helmet saved his life.
A ceiling fell on them. That's why that helmets in the condition is. And that's the why. It's the one I keep on display. I idolized my dad. My dad was an amazing man in my eyes. Like I said, he died at 59 years old when I was 30 to this day, he's my hero to this day. He's a guiding light for me. I often look in and think and say, should I do this or this?
And I think, what would my father do? What would he want? Or what would he be proud of if I did it this way or that. [00:45:00] And I usually go with what I think this is what he would be proud of. This is what he'd agree with. And not that I'm trying to please him, I'm just using his mindset and what I've learned from him.
He was my baseball coach. He was a hockey coach. He, he instilled a lot in me in a lot of different ways. Point being, he was a great guy who helped people. He saved lives. He got commendations for saving lives and I wanted to grow up to be a firefighter. And I did fairly well in school. My father knew that wasn't for me.
And he proved it to me in a very funny way, but I couldn't help people the way he did, but I still wanted to help people. So I help people the way I do. And here's the thing. I know David, most of my clients are much younger than me. I don't have any clients that is my age or older. I have some that aren't that much younger, but most of them are much younger.
I will never see the [00:46:00] pinnacle of their career. I won't live long enough to see that, but I will know that I made a difference in people's lives with what I do. And that's a pretty cool thing. So the only way when people say, Hey, how can I help you? If you want to help me help more people. That's pretty cool.
I'll take that all day long. Well, let's do this. Peter. Someone wants to connect with you. What's the best way for them to reach out and, and, and communicate with you. Easiest way to do it is go to Peter, George public speaking.com, pretty literal Peter George public speaking.com. And they can learn about me there, my services.
They can learn about those. They can contact me that through that. They can schedule a call automatically. That'll show up on my. And we can talk if they'd like no obligations, no nothing. If they just wanna chat about public [00:47:00] speaking, I live and breathe public speaking. So if they just want to chat about it and tell me their great experience, they had something they accomplished.
They never thought they would. I'd love to hear that. Absolutely love to hear it. So I would love for people to reach out and I have clients on four continents. I have clients in China. I have clients in Poland and the Netherlands clients of course, here in the U S Canada. And it goes all all around. So it's yes, people just want to reach out and talk about public speaking.
Call me. All right. I got two more questions you got time. I do. All right. So here's the first question we talked about how you don't want to get rid of your nerves, but you want to learn how to harness them. To this day, every time I speak publicly, I get so nervous. And I [00:48:00] mean, yeah, I mean, I get like messed up.
I got are people don't understand. They think I'm a, what's the word in extrovert, but really I'm an introvert. And when I get up to speak publicly, it's terrifying. Like I can, I've literally been in situations where it's like midnight, I'm at a gas station. People were going to jump me zero nerves. No problem.
It's just part of life, roll with it. But when I go to speak, I just feel this pressure that man, these people, like you said, I'm supposed to be bringing them value and helping them. And I don't want to disappoint them. So my mind starts spinning. So I used to say, well, how do I minimize my nerves? But when I'm hearing you say is no, how do you funnel that energy?
Again, you gave great tips, but on that topic to really just calm down a little bit, to refocus that energy, what would you say to a guy like me and to our listeners who have the same problem, [00:49:00] find what works for you in calming yourself. Again, you're not going to get rid of the nerves nor do you want to, but you want to calm yourself.
Is it meditation before you speak me? I pace give me six feet and I'll just pace back and forth in that six feet. Give me a complete Carta. If I'm like speaking at a hotel and there's a car, I'll pace up and down that car to, for about a half an hour before I speak. So I know speakers who run before they speak and they have just enough time to shower and then hop out on stage, find something that gets you in the physical.
So we say mindset, but in the physical aspect of taking those nerves, Bringing them corralling them, your word, corralling them. So again, might be meditation, just calming yourself, diaphragmatic breathing while you're taking deep breaths and letting it out. Don't hold them. [00:50:00] Some people will tell you in for four or eight, whatever it might be, hold it for four or eight hours for it.
I don't believe in that. We're not at a doctor's office. And I believe when we hold onto our breath, wait, and then hold onto it. We're tensing ourselves. And we're trying not to tense ourselves. So just in and out, not too fast. Cause you'll get too lightheaded. Find out what it is. My wife would meditate before she'd speak and she had to speak a lot on stage, but she has sometimes and she'll meditate find what does it feel?
And again, people will say, oh, but now my I'll be too far down. My I'll be too calm. No you want, yeah, no you won't. If, if you can find that I want to know about. Mo the moment you start walking out on that stage, it's back, but it's back in a different way. And think about it. David, when you were asked to speak, they selected you, you didn't win a lottery [00:51:00] to go speak.
They asked you, they liked your personality. They liked your talent. They like the way you engage them as a person. And on a personal level, they asked you for a reason. So go just know Nike, just do it, but it, and it's not people that will just go keep doing it again. Just keep doing it again. And you, you brought up one of the mine.
What'd you say? Judo. Oh yeah. . That would be like saying to me, just go do it, just keep going, doing judo. You know what you think of the right moves and you'll be a master. No, you won't. Repetitiveness helps you get calm with it. It helps you channel it, but it's knowing how to do it well, and here's what I believe confidence comes from competence.
And when we, we know we're competent in something, like I said, when I [00:52:00] know I've done my due diligence and I train all the time to do this, then I'm competent. And that's where confidence comes from. Same thing with my clients. I know that will become confident once that competence is reached. So for you find out what works for you, find out what helps you channel those nerves and then know that you're there for a reason.
And it's you for. And that will help guide you into getting where you need to go. Don't try to get rid of the nerves. And that's what everybody tries to do. It just won't work. And then keep in mind, you don't have to do this. You get to do this. Yeah. That's when someone brings you in front of other people, like you did for me on this podcast, when someone brings you in front of other people to affect their lives, [00:53:00] because you're not just effecting their knowledge with that knowledge, they can change their lives.
So when you can affect someone's life, that's a pretty cool thing. And it's a hell of a responsibility.
And that's why I hate to see people winging it. I know my stuff. I'll just go out there and toss.
Well, I know how to run, but. Compete in the Olympics. I know what singing's all about. I'm a guitarist. I've been for many years. I'm not ever a Clapton or Jimi Hendrix or anybody else. I'm not, I'm just not that good, even though I know how to do it, I'm not as good as they are. It's more than knowing your stuff.
Do you know what it is? The Japanese have a word for it when you know what you want to say, and you have the guts to get up in front of people and do it. Do you know what the Japanese call it? It's one word I do not[00:54:00]
karaoke. Think about it. You know the words. So you know what you want to say, and you've got the guts to get up there in front of those people. But here's my question for the most part, how good is karaoke? And unless your audience has had three beers in a shot, you're probably not that. When we wing it, it's the same thing.
And when we wing it, it's disrespectful to the audience and to ourselves, we've been asked to effect, change in people and we're just going to wing it. Wow. I don't want my doctor who has to operate on me. Who's going to affect my life tremendously to wing it. Yeah. Good point. Very true and very important.
So it's taken appreciation knowing that we've been asked to speak because someone sees value in us. I [00:55:00] don't want that imposter syndrome get ahead of you. And just to prepare, I love that, but change that I'm not picking on your words, but just change that. Oh, Hey, pick on that's important. We've been asked to speak.
No, we haven't. We say that that's just shorthand. We've been asked. We've been asked to affect someone's life. They have business career, that personal life, the life of their family, when we're speaking, we're effective. So we're not asked to speak. We're asked to affect someone's life and you should handle it in that way.
And there'll be people there'll be speakers. There'll be trainers like me, other coaches who will say, wow, man, that's really overdoing it. Well, maybe it is. It's just the way I look at it, but I know if I can affect someone's life and public speaking, then that may make a difference in their career or their happiness.
And that's [00:56:00] a pretty cool thing. And if I make a difference in their career, maybe they get that promotion. They otherwise wouldn't have. Maybe they go for a job they otherwise wouldn't have. And now they have the income to get that house on the lake in Michigan or wherever. What to travel to Europe where they otherwise wouldn't have whatever it might be that changes their lives.
So when we're asked to speak, it's so much more than that. And that's why when people say, oh, gee, I know what I'm talking about. You know what you're talking about, but you don't know how to communicate. And those are two different things. Yeah, man, that's some great golden. This thank you so much, Peter. You can tell I'm a little bit passionate about this.
Oh yeah. No, that's beautiful. Most of our episodes are on the personal level and everything is like blended together. Your episodes have been more on the actual topic, which you're passionate about, [00:57:00] and that's why I want to kind of close with this next two questions. Just to wrap it all up from your birth to today.
Is there anything we missed through your life? Anything significant that you want to cover? Or did we hit all the points that you want to bring forward to our audience today? Anything in between? Wow. That's, that's easy. Right? Well, my brain is very quickly going through the years. No, I think we hit on the most important part and that was a loving family.
Okay. Then I'm going to ask you, I'm going to ask you the last question and then we're going to get into just a couple little fun, fun moments. So last question, is this somebody who's just listen to this entire episode. If you had one message that they can meditate on, think through, stick in their brain, what would that be?
Anybody can do this, [00:58:00] anybody, and that's not, that's not a hyperbole. Anybody can do this. And you know, you hear the line all the time. Hell if I can do this, anybody can, but you're looking at someone who has to speech and better. And they're both still there people go, I don't hear you stutter. Well, if we got on the right subject or would, but, and, and now I'm trying to avoid it.
You know, they, we all have something to contribute and find what it is, and it might be big and it might be a SPI small things that we don't even think of, find out what that is. And just one be happy for yourself. Cause you can't be happy. I don't believe for anybody else unless you're happy for yourself.
And in some way, affect change in other people in a good way. Some people do it by being doctors. Some people do it by being great chefs and giving people wonderful meals. [00:59:00] I do it by helping them communicate more effectively. We can all do it.
And I'll give you one last one example for that, I was just on a Manhattan speaking last week and I got into a taxi that guy made my day absolutely made my day. He'll never know it. I told him, gave him a heck of a tip more than the fear was. The tip was more than the fear was because he, he made my day.
Anybody can do it. That's fantastic. All right. Everybody's listening to this. I think will Peters are professional and Peter practice and Peter had a loving upbringing, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. But that's not true. We all have strengths. We all have weaknesses. Like you said, anybody can do it, but not everybody will, because if it was easy, everybody would do it.
Right. That's right. So one of my dad's saying, yeah, [01:00:00] yeah, but this is the thing. Talk about quickly. Give us a example of one of your disaster moments on stage and one of your most proud moments on stage. So give us a disaster and then we'll go to the proud, and then we'll wrap this episode up in the other order.
Yeah. If you want to, yeah. It's your show, baby. This is the, this is the Peter show, not the Dave show. So whatever you want, my proudest moments on stage, it wasn't one. Any my proudest moments on stage actually come when I get off stage, when I speak to people afterwards, if they talk about me, Peter, that was a great job.
You're awesome. Up there. You are entertaining. You are this. You are captivating. I've done a poor job. I know that if I'm getting complimented, I've probably done a port. If they come up to me and say, I never knew that that's going to make a change in me. I'm going to take that away and [01:01:00] do this with my life.
I am going to go do this. As you suggested, if they speak about themselves and what they're taking away, then I've done my job. Those are my proudest moments. That's when I know I've done. Well, my biggest disaster was I was speaking somewhere where I had spoken previously and spoken afterwards, which was the amazing part that I was asked back.
But remember I said, don't change when you're going out to speak. Don't change what you decided your opening was. Yup. I have, and I won't tell it. Believe me. I won't tell it. Cause my wife will beat me. I have a favorite joke. That is sophomores. That is in bad taste. It's not off color. It's not valid.
Anything like that. It's just not a joke. You should be proud of. You can. It just isn't [01:02:00] somewhere in my head, walking out on stage in front of 750 middle management people in this organization, I decided it was the appropriate time to tell this joke. Oh no. And I told it
here, the reaction right now, nothing. That's the reaction I get. I didn't get out. Ah, or, ah, I can't believe he just told that joke. I didn't get any of that. I got absolutely. Silence. And I was up there for a total of 50 minutes. And I'll tell you exactly what I did. If you're watching on video, you saw me do it.
I took a pause and I grabbed water and I drank it. And my thought to myself at that point was it can only get better. It can't get any worse than this. That was my, oh my God. What possessed you? And he was the coolest thing. My wife, my best friend, my greatest [01:03:00] critique person critiques me most heavily because she knows me.
She knows when I wasn't feeling it and all those things. She happened to be in the audience in the front. And I looked over the edge of the stage at her and she had her head in her hands. And that's when I knew, oh, this is going to be a long plane ride. And she never said anything other than what position.
So all she asked that was actually in the hotel room that night. What I said, I have no idea. Absolutely no idea, but that was my biggest disaster. That's all. And so for our listeners, it happens to us all we have. Yeah. We have wonderful accounts. We have the, I don't want to say average. Hopefully we're always striving for that excellence, but we have the everyday accounts and we all have the train Rach.
Right. Even Peter, we all have our train wreck. So here's, here's the coolest thing. [01:04:00] My favorite stories in life train wrecks. Right. David, I went out there and I smashed it on onstage. That's not interesting to you. That's not interesting to me, but when I tell you this went wrong or my fly was down, or, you know, I always say, what does a guy do nine times before he walks out on stage?
People say, inhale, breathe, jumping jacks. Nope. Checks. Yeah. Nine times before they walk out on stage. And you know, that has happened. If you've been on stage enough, all these things are going to happen. Are they a disaster at the moment? Yes, they will be your favorite stories. You didn't die. You didn't negatively affect anybody's life.
Those will be your favorite stories. Yeah. And to the audience too. And again, Peter, you correct me if I'm wrong or you expound on it, but you talked about how our job is to communicate to the [01:05:00] audience. The audience that same joke might've died 24 places, but there might be one spot on the earth where that joke killed it.
Right? I hope not. So, no, no, but there are times like you'll hear comedians and stuff and they're like, they can use this jokes only in a certain region of the country or the world. So you got to really know your audience, but like Peter said, there's also discretion and knowing when to not say things right.
Discussion was not in the room at this time. All right, Peter. Well, it's been a true pleasure having you here today. Thank you so much to our listeners. We love you. If you have any questions for Peter, like you said, reach out, go to his website, the links in the show notes, but Peter, for those who are listening and they got a pen and paper, give that a URL.
One more time. Peter, George public speaking.com. Awesome. So we love you. [01:06:00] There's a lot of people that have this difficulty share this episode. Not because Peter and I need success or want to be famous, but because we want to help you and your friends and family. So share this, like it rate it, review it. If we can't get five stars, tell us why.
So we can fix it and be better. I can't fix the ugly, but we can fix how we communicate. So we love you. I'm David Pascoe, along with the remarkable people podcast, Peter, you truly are a remarkable man. Thank you for being here today and to our list for having me. Oh yeah. It's a pleasure. We'll have to catch up again.
Another episode to our listeners have a great day and like our slogan says, don't just listen to this great content from Peter, but do it each day. Repeat it so you can have a great life in this world and the attorney to come have a great one. Ciao.