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  • Writer's pictureZoe Spooner

Quick Tips for Speaking to Authority

Chatting to someone in seniority can be nerve-wracking.

We can say to ourselves, who am I to be speaking to them, or the classic; what if I say something wrong.

How often do we find ourselves thinking that we will be discovered as a secret spy undercover when really we are just checking where the solicitor is with the paperwork.

Or perhaps an imposter under the guise of our own name attempting to make devious bank transfers aka querying an unusual transaction.

These thoughts can stand in our way of speaking to people who hold any authority.

It can put us at a disadvantage and mean we don’t follow up on everyday life admin. Stopping us from standing up for ourselves.

When you are next speaking to someone that you feel inferior to, you can remind yourself to:

  • Stand your ground

  • Know what you want

  • Prepare yourself and what you might say

  • Be respectful

  • Breathe if your anxiety rises

It can feel embarrassing and we can feel overly self-conscious. Maybe even convince ourselves they will think we are a fraud or have done something wrong.

It is important to be kind and remind ourselves that the majority of people are:

  • There to help

  • Fighting their own battles

  • Probably not suspicious of foul play - Despite what our inner demon likes to tell us

  • Blind to our nervous behaviour

How to Follow these steps to ease your anxiety:

Stand Your Ground - When discussing what you need from someone say a bank manager or a lawyer, it is important to be firm with your needs. If they appear they don’t have time for this make it clear that what you need can’t wait. You are just as important as the next person. Standing your ground may feel uncomfortable but will mean you won’t get pushed around and hopefully not have to spend even more time waiting.

Know What You Want - The clearer you can be about what it is you want the easier the conversation will be. Be really precise about what your needs are. They can ask for more details if necessary. Knowing what you want will mean you will know when you haven’t got it too! This will also help you stand your ground as above.

Prepare Yourself - Think about what you might say to the bank manager. Are you changing details on an account, withdrawing money or need advice from your lawyer. If you are prepped you will instantly be respected more. Take it a step further and think about any information you might need. Not only will it ease your anxiety not having to think about the answers on the spot you likely will be out faster too!

Be Respectful - When we are nervous we can sometimes come across as rude. Not meaning to, it is just our painful urge to get out of their as fast as possible! Remember that the person in front of you is that a person, a human being. If they aren’t meeting your requests straight away exercise some patience. It likely isn’t about you and more about everything else they have going on.

Breathe - If anxiety starts knocking on your door and you feel as though everyone is looking at you. Breathe. If you are starting to forget what you need and your mind is going blank. Breathe. Our breath has an amazing influence on our nervous system. It can take us out of fight or flight and ground us in reality. When we are stressed parts of our brain get locked off, our breath helps us reactivate the whole brain.

If trying to speak to people in authority is stopping you from moving forward in your life then get in touch today to find out how I can support you:

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