Presence… that one little magic thing, “vibe”, not so tangible and very hard to define yet so important.
Building presence is somehow like falling in love – you cannot force it, yet you must be open to it, and create fertile ground for it to grow.
Presence is really about our personality and confidence in life and ourselves, confidence that is coming from inside but is demonstrating to others in a way that we call Presence.
People with presence really radiate all of these things:
Although presence is difficult to define, most of people would easily recognize it when they see it or, better to say, feel it.
Person that has presence is the person that gets noticed, captures attention, leaves impression on others and stays remembered.
This goes from the moment when they enter the room, to the moment when they speak. Attention of others simply goes in direction of people with Presence – people listen what they say, notice what they do and follow their lead.
People with strong presence seem at peace with themselves and self-confident.
At the same time, they are open and engaging towards others – their attention is turned outwards, toward people around them, with curiosity, positivity, enthusiasm. People feel drawn towards them and get engaged in their enthusiasm and motivated when around them.
But where is Presence coming from? Some describe it as strength of personality, and personal energy.
In my view, Presence is a combination of 3 aspects:
1. Physical aspect of presence
Perhaps physical aspect is not the most important one when we speak about the presence, but it is the first thing that gets noticed.
Standing tall and strong voice are tools that will help you being seen and heard.
Posture will demonstrate confidence and open body language will show open attitude towards our environment.
Even clothes can impact our Presence, as it radiate our confidence, how much importance we give to ourselves, and serves to bring attention to us.
Using our body and all of its aspect to own the space around us and to demonstrate our confidence is the best basis that we can set for a strong presence.
2. Emotion that you feel about yourself
Presence is the way in which your positive sides shine out of you – strength of character, knowing what you stand for, being at peace with yourself and faith and optimism in self and others.
The best way to be present is to be authentic – and being proud of that authenticity.
People with Presence are honest and open of their opinions and truly believing in what they say or do.
3. Emotion that you radiate towards others and environment
At the same time, they adapt to the others and the environment – listening, observing, being tuned into people and situations around us.
They approach situations with sense of responsibility for themselves and the results of their actions, being active player in space around him/her and shaping that space.
People who are present make others feel good about themselves. They enter a room not with “Here I am”, but with “Here you are!” ->with openness, curiosity and positivity towards others.
Really important thing to remember here is that energy flows where you focus your attention! Where we focus of our mind and attention also directs the way in which we act.
“Personal energy” is really about expressing positive emotions, being energetic but peaceful, demonstrating optimism – channeling energy effectively, without appearing hyperactive or nervous…..how? Through attention – its not about how much energy you radiate, but about howyou direct it.
Its also about attitude – showing interest and trust in other people and situations.
Importance of Presence in Presentation skills
If you remember one of the first posts about ‘bird-attention” http://theperfectpresentation.com/?p=60, then presence is keeping that attention from the audience throughout your presentation, but also making them feel that they can trust you, and your message.
Having presence is really about using personal power to create an impact.
Now, after setting the basics as to what presence is…. the next step is obviously to learn more about how to grow your own personal presence.
About that…more in the next post