Find Your Voice, Change Your Life

Find Your Voice, Change Your Life

Psychologist and Host, Dr. Doreen Downing, invites guests who have suffered from public speaking anxiety to tell their story of struggle and how they overcame fear. They took an inner journey, found the voice that is truly their own, and now speak with confidence.

Episodes

November 25, 2021 20 min

Today I interview Matt Travis who had a lot of learning disabilities when he was a kid and it always created a sense of not feeling that he was enough. This made him struggle to speak in front of classes and groups. 

When he was in college studying to become a teacher, Matt had to learn to become comfortable with being uncomfortable in order to follow his passion. Being able to speak in front of large groups was a big part of that. ...

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Today, I interview Dr. Tressa Berman who was a child performer -- singer and songwriter from an early age. She put away her creative life for something that felt "safer," and became an academic professor until somewhere in the middle of that career, she lost had a breakdown/breakthrough.

This breakdown  brought her to her spiritual path and back to her creative life. She eventually left academia to embrace the unknown and al...

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November 11, 2021 27 min

Today, I interview JoAnna Brandi wo was part of the "be seen and not heard" generation of children. She grew up in a household that revolved around her parents and their words. 

In a strong, outspoken Italian family, she struggled to speak up in the crowd. She was also conditioned by strictly enforced rules in Catholic school. 

She was terrified when she had to start public speaking. She traced it back to a situation that hap...

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Today, I interview Laban Ditchburn who discovered that although self-deprecation worked as a defense mechanism, it was doing damage to his view of himself. It was tearing down his confidence.?

Although we've all seen it used in comedy, when you get to the root of it, it's clearly "cringe-worthy", as Laban puts it. He started to treat himself better and remove the negative self-talk.

This opened the door to a more posi...

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Today, I interview Robin Winn who was born into a large, loud family. Her parents had a powerful presence, and she never felt that her voice was as big. There were a lot of opinions, and speaking out randomly wasn't encouraged, and the only way to appear powerful was to be articulate. She instead learned to communicate through touch and writing. 

Later in therapy, she learned to speak in a safe space. As her therapist listened, ...

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October 21, 2021 27 min

Today, I interview Janine Bolon who grew up in a military and nursing household, where communication was brief and direct. She felt she didn't know how to tell a compelling, connective story.

She also moved a lot throughout her young life, causing her to feel constant loss and disconnection. After years abroad, she suddenly found herself in a small, Mayberry town in Missouri. 

As the first one in her family to attend college, her...

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October 14, 2021 34 min

Today, I interview Elaine Williams who said that growing up, she felt an emptiness-- that something was wrong with the world. She experienced childhood depression and anxiety, feeling as if no one was really listening to her. 

Later events led to her feeling like "the lightning rod of the family", having too much directed at her. She felt it was unsafe to speak the truth for fear that it would be used against her. Missing th...

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October 7, 2021 22 min

Today, I interview Marti MacEwan who says that although she was a successful speaker, there was a lack of satisfaction after speaking because there was a lingering fear of those eyes on her and the opinions of her audience. No amount of reassurance helped. 

Marti learned to refocus her energy and was able to overcome stage fright by shifting her awareness and her expectations. 

Marti who is a professional counselor and "Stage Fri...

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Today, I interview Tom Ruwitch who talks about his roots and success in the sales industry. He realized that although he "communicated" and "hustled" all day, the quantity was squelching the quality. 

What he was doing didn't represent who he truly was and how he felt on the inside. Tom points out that we're taught that the harder we work the better we'll do, and not to lean on others. 

He has learned how ...

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September 16, 2021 30 min

Today, I interview, Lorraine LaPointe who talks about the way that our mindset shapes our reactions and views of the world. 

She is able to share the story of an experience she had as a child, and the impact it had on her in feeling that she could not express herself. 

Now, talking regularly on her own shows, she has clearly overcome this fear. She says, "there is a deep desire in all of us to be recognized for who we are, and to...

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September 9, 2021 22 min

Today, I interview Steve Peck who catches our attention right away when he says "I knew where I found my voice. I just didn't know where I'd lost it!" 

As an introvert, Steve had an active and very successful career but experienced moments where he felt that people didn't want to listen to his ideas, so he consequently became quiet. 

He began to keep things inside and avoid those connections. He has a story of ove...

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September 2, 2021 23 min


Today, I interview Ted Prodromou who talks about his shy beginnings as an introverted child. He later realized that he had been carrying around years of hurt from being picked on by his siblings. It had really impacted his self-esteem and courage! As adults, his sibling's later apology brought about the sudden realization of the root cause of his fear. 

The good news is that healing can come anytime! It's not too late! Ted l...

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August 26, 2021 27 min

Today, I interview Steve Sapato who shares stories from his past where he learned how important it is to put yourself out there and let go of your fear of being seen. Learning to speak brings confidence!

Steve discusses the way we learn and the mindset that has shaped the way the world interacts and behaves now. Sometimes we don't realize what we have been carrying, but our past always plays a part in who we become. The key is t...

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Today, I interview Meredith Bell who shares an important childhood story and the fears of judgment, rejection, and criticism she has experienced and carried with her. She remembers being afraid to "speak her truth". 

As a professional adult, she later realized that the common thread within each of her projects was her tendency to think smaller than she should have. She has since realized that she can do more, perform better,...

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Today, I interview Jonathan Bender, MS, MFA, a coach and creator of the WholeSpeak Method, an approach that transforms nerves into confidence.

Jonathan shared his story of being bullied for years growing up, as well as being raised in an abusive household. As a consequence he had no sense of self-esteem or being able to speak up at all.

Joining his high school speech team and then doing theater allowed him to first find his voice on ...

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July 31, 2021 25 min

Today, I interview  Caterina Rando who looks back to her childhood in a noisy, overly lively household and not having the courage to speak up in the face of it. She also struggled with feeling a little bit held back due to being a plus-sized female her whole life. 

Interestingly, she enjoyed public speaking because she had been given permission to speak; her real fear crept in when she was among people with opportunities to chime in...

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Today, I interview Kristen Harcourt who shares a story from her childhood where she figured out how to live in the world confidently and speak with courage as a unique individual. 

As she graduated from college and began working in the corporate world, she learned how to overcome limiting environments in order to embrace positive mentorship and set exciting goals for herself.

______________________

For more than a decade, Kristen has ...

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Today, I interview Regeline "Gigi" Sabbat who shares a glimpse into her once painful past traumas. She has refocused herself on her relationship with God and allowed that to build her hope and confidence. 

Instead of allowing her trauma to make her feel like a victim, she quiets herself and listens, remembering that she is not alone. A very powerful message! _____ 

Regeline Sabbat, also known as Gigi, is a Motivational Keynot...

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Today, I interview Daniela Wolfe who shares the first time she remembers feeling afraid to speak. She has found her own identity and let go of the lies of fear, and she is now able to cheer her children on to speak boldly. 

She works to inspire confidence, balance, and strength in her many clients. Daniela helps overwhelmed women live a lifestyle they love through simple systems to manage their time and daily tasks. She works togeth...

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Today, I interview Lisa Wentz. We discuss the origins of our fears and the way our childhood experiences shape our voice and our boldness to speak. She touches on narcissistic parenting and the lack of encouragement toward children to share their views and thoughts.

Listen to Lisa's wonderful story of resilience. She found encouragement elsewhere and respected new role models, overcoming odds to find her voice at a very young ag...

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