I hope you’ve experienced the buzz when you get your presentation delivery spot-on. But have you ever questioned why it feels so good? And have you ever wondered why the fear of public speaking overwhelms some people?
The answer, it seems, lies in something we all treasure, aim to protect, and hate to have damaged: our self-esteem.
Thanks to advances in neuroscience we can see that the emotional pain and hurt feelings we get when our self-esteem is damaged activate similar brain processes to physical pain. As this recent article in The Guardian explains, damaged self-esteem affects our behaviour. It can cause minor squabbles to escalate into long running feuds and disputes.