A speaker’s charisma is his being openly himself. This is also the main characteristic of leadership.
In following you while speaking, the audience gets closer together. That’s a leader’s stuff. A charismatic speaker touches his audience and invites and leads them towards his vision. A speaker’s charisma thus may change someone’s life or even the course of history – as has been done in the past.
So what is charisma?
You can liken charisma to empathy. A charismatic speaker speaks from the heart – to the heart. It may be the most important thing that people remember: the feeling while listening to YOU.
So give them – YOU.
Be generous with yourself, giving yourself to the occasion. Let people recognize you in the way you act, talk, respond. Openly. Anyway, if you are a good speaker, they like to see you. Whether consciously or unconsciously, they come for you.
And your talk’s content? Indeed. The content through you.
A charismatic speaker looks at his audience and responds to them. The audience thus can look at him and respond to him. There is a special communication. In whatever situation, speak as a person and to a person, one only, then to another. At any moment and from within yourself, make contact with one person. If you talk to all, you are talking to no one. While talking to one person, you are also talking to the others. All feel touched. That is your art.
Of course, even this can be brought as a mere technique. Then you are diminishing your art which can only come from deep inside you.
A charismatic speaker is an artist performer.
People notice even if not consciously. It’s much like the reaction to an artist performer. A very good actor becomes his act. He may know his text by heart. Still he can bring it in the most spontaneous way.
Nervousness, a fear to show yourself.
What can you do to avoid this? In a nutshell: opening up and actively showing yourself as you are. Let your message fully be: this is who I am – dear audience, what you see is what you get: ME. If the audience responds to this with an OK, you’re in it together. Not ‘me versus them.’ Just all together ‘us.’ The more you think about ‘us’, the less you need to be nervous. So:
Let yourself be open.
No tricks. You can open up your body by standing frontal to the public. However, let your standing, as your walking and anything else, come from within yourself. You are looking at your audience and you let yourself – your deeper self – free to respond. Your audience notices this and may also become more open. They smile, which makes you smile – which makes you more inspired. There is an unconscious connection – from inner self to inner self.
This may seem super easy but it isn’t. Faking art may be easy. Bringing true art never is.
Charisma is like surfing on the waves of your audience. A good surfer is mentally close to the wave. In telling a story for instance, you can invite a growing wave. You know where the story is going to. You let your audience flow in that direction. It’s as if they create the wave. You surf on their energy.
What everybody feels then is your charisma and in all humility: your Open Leadership.
In the end, it is you. Your charisma is a revolving door towards you.
You as a unique person.
You as a total person: most of what makes you unique is not what you consciously know about yourself. In this respect, your charisma is not different from any other kind of art.