Unleash Your Feminine Charisma

When it comes to charisma, we’ve been told, “You’re either born with it or you’re not.” 

In truth, we are all born with charisma. 

Unfortunately, throughout our lives, we’ve been taught to suppress our emotions, our life force, and our feminine power. We’ve been told, both consciously and unconsciously, “Don’t be too big. Don’t be too much. Don’t be too emotional.” Society asks us to hide our natural radiance in order to “fit in.” So, we put on masks that suppress our innate, feminine power. 

That charisma, that power, still lives inside each of us, waiting to be tapped and unleashed. 

How can we reconnect to and unleash our feminine charisma when it counts?

Root in Your Soul’s Purpose

When we say “yes” to speaking in public, we tend to be connected to our Soul’s Purpose (even if that’s a subconscious connection.) Then, in between that first “yes” and the moment of truth, our soul suckers™ try to take over. Our soul suckers (aka inner critics) come from lack. They see everything through a “not enough” lens. When they’re in charge of how we show up, they “disaster trip:” envisioning the worst possible outcome, and then attempt to avoid that disaster at all costs. They chatter incessantly in our inner ear, saying things like: “Don’t say the wrong thing!” Don’t show too much emotion.” “You’d better outrun everyone’s boredom – talk fast!” 

If, instead, we connect to our Soul’s Purpose, and allow our Soul to drive how we show up everything changes. We can then focus on our audience and what our Soul wants for them. Imagine focusing on inspiring, awakening or giving your audience hope, and then watching that happen right before your eyes.

Breathe Life into the Experience

One of the main ways we suppress our emotions is by restricting our breathing. Picture a baby. When babies cry, even before they speak, they take full, expansive, nourishing breaths. They then use that breath to support the sound of their voices. A baby’s cry can be heard on the other side of the house. Even without words, we feel what they’re trying to communicate. 

As we grow up and are taught to suppress, hide, and fit in, we develop habits of, as Mary Oliver said, “Breathing just a little and calling it a life.” We suppress our breath and then strain our muscles in order to be heard. (No wonder many of us lose our voices if asked to speak for any significant length of time.)

Breathing life into the experience means nourishing our bodies with breath and then using that breath to nourish and support the sound of our voices. We’re capable of a vocal resonance beyond most of our wildest dreams. 

Breathing life into the experience also means fully embracing both the words and the silences between them. In music, the space is as important as the notes. It’s the white space that reveals the image in visual art. In speaking, it’s the silence that reveals the meaning. It’s during the silence that our listeners have the chance to digest what we’re saying – intellectually and, more importantly, emotionally.

(The silence is also a convenient time to take that nourishing breath!)

Invite People

With every breath, every word, every silence, invite people to come with you as you fulfill your Soul’s purpose. While, if you’re speaking in public, you may be doing the majority of the talking, there is a conversation happening. Listen to your audience’s non-verbal half of the conversation. Energize the space by wrapping the crowd up in your energetic arms. Savor every image that you say as if you were savoring a piece of delicious dark chocolate, a bite of tasty cheese, or a glass of fine wine. 

At this moment in time, we desperately need more women who are ready to stand in their power and speak their truth. We need more feminine charisma in the world. Each of us has that lost charisma inside, just waiting to be re-born. 

You may also like: Ask to Learn New Things: Six Steps to Expand Your Feminine Power

About Lauri Smith:

Lauri Smith, author of Your Voice Matters: A Guide to Speaking Soulfully When It Counts, is an inspirational speaker, educator and coach. Lauri’s passion is helping change-makers stand in their power and speak their truth – from the bedroom, to the Boardroom to the TED Talk Stage. She helps each and every client she works with to unleash their innate, unique charisma, so that they can make their mark in the world. She helps leaders do more than communicate, she helps them move people.

Website: http://www.voice-matters.com/

Facebook ID: voicemattersllc

LinkedIn ID: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lauri-smith-voice-matters/

Twitter: @LauriSmithLLC

Key Tools for Killer Presentations

Want to stand up and speak out with confidence, genuinely inspiring and influencing your audience?

Whether it’s a high-stakes presentation on a stage or a high-impact conversation in an office, Nan Crawford has some tools for you (and for an audio version of these tools, listen to Power Practice #16: Stepping Up and Speaking Out).


When preparing an impactful presentation, Nan says, it’s important to consider 2 realms: the internal factors of strategy and the external factors of delivery.

Internal Strategy

Ask yourself:

  1. Who is my audience?
  2. What do they need?
  3. How do I prepare to deliver that to them?

Identifying your audience and their needs is pretty straightforward. But how do you deliver on those needs if you’re busy worrying, “How do I keep from freaking out?!” That’s where #3 comes in.

It’s all about focus, Nan says. If you struggle with stage-fright or nerves, you can let go of that jagged energy by shifting your focus from fear to desire. Shift your focus from fear of failure to your desire to make a difference. Shift your focus from the fear of judgement to the desire to be generous. Shift your focus from a fear of rejection to a desire to connect. From fear of forgetting what you’re going to say to a desire to guide the audience to a place of discovery.

Shifting focus from fear to desire to be of service will allow you to connect with your audience and their needs in a way that is authentic, confident, and effective.

External Delivery

Ask yourself:

  1. How will I walk into the room? Where will I land? How will I hold my body?
  2. What am I aware of in terms of my breathing?
  3. Are my voice, facial expressions, and gestures congruent with my message?
  4. What do I want my audience to feel, say, and do?

The way you move and position yourself sends messages to the audience before you’ve even spoken a word. If you plan ahead of time how to position yourself so that energy is flowing through your spine, you’ll foster an immediate connection between your audience and your intention.

Breathing is another opportunity to send a clear message. So many of us live in a world of full plates and fast lanes. When you are “extravagant with our breath,” as Nan encourages, it allows you a moment of clarity to choose words that are delicious and juicy. More than that, it’s an act of generosity to your audience, giving them time and space to let your ideas (and their own) really land.

By taking big full breaths you give energy to your voice, allowing for concise, crisp, and clear words spoken with conviction. You connect with your body, creating facial expressions and gestures that are vibrant, alive, and compelling.

All of these factors are driven by your overall intention. Writing action verbs in the margins of your presentation will help you connect with what you want your audience to do, say, and feel. Maybe you want to challenge them or shake them up. Perhaps you need to dismiss a concern or clarify a point. You can paint a vivid picture. You can advocate, warn, or reassure.

It’s important to note: the question is not “What do I want them to learn?” If your intention is to inform, you are not going to inspire our audience to take action. “We’re all drowning in information,” Nan says. “What we hunger for is insight and inspiration, for energy and encouragement.”

We’re thrilled to have Nan Crawford bringing her insight and inspiration to the stage at Emerging Women Live 2017, along with killer presentations from Elizabeth Gilbert, Sera Beak, Alicia Garza, Esther Perel, Amanda Steinberg, and so many more. Register today for an some unforgettable energy and encouragement:


Remember: how you deliver your message is just as vital as what you have to say. With Nan’s tools, you are well on your way to giving a presentation that will genuinely inspire and influence your audience.

And be sure to tell us what killer presentations you have in the works in the comments!

Power Practice #16: Stepping Up and Speaking Out

There’s one question Nan Crawford hears a lot: How do I walk on stage with confidence, and genuinely inspire and influence my audience?

In this Power Practice, Nan shares her tips for crafting a good strategy before your presentation or conversation so that you will authentically connect with your audience. She illustrates how simple shifts in focus can lead to a tremendous increase in confidence and connection. She also leads us through a breathing practice which releases the jagged energy that comes with high stakes presentations and conversations.

Take 10 minutes to reframe your relationship to public speaking, and let the power of your voice help you make an impact in this world.

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Play Power Practice #16 – Stepping Up and Speaking Out:

Nan CrawfordNan Crawford is on a mission to create a world where women and girls know their power. An expert in how to increase your influence, Nan coaches bold women leaders to step onto a bigger stage. Nan has helped clients secure Executive level promotions, craft funding pitches that have raised millions of dollars, write and deliver powerful presentations for boards of directors, TED, Clinton Global Initiative, The State Department, The White House and The Colbert Report. Clients include: Autodesk, Boeing, Deloitte, eBay, Kaiser Permanente, Google, Paramount, Target, Wells Fargo and World Pulse. She serves as Executive Education Faculty for Columbia, Harvard and UC Berkeley’s Graduate Schools of Business. A cum laude graduate of the University of Texas with a BFA in Theatre, Nan holds an MA from The California Institute of Integral Studies in Organization Development. Nan Crawford has been featured in Fast Company magazine and The New York Times calls her work “inspirational”.

Like what you hear? Why not get in on four full days of power practices, movement, inspiration and collaboration at Emerging Women Live, October 5-8, 2017 in Denver, CO. Join us!

Fear and Courage

When we are emerging, we feel that nothing can stop us, right? We feel the fire of our own inner alignment, and the clarity of our truth is rocket fuel for making our dreams manifest. We ride high on what we know is right and we feel like we have super powers.

Until the fear hits. And just like that, Bam! We become paralyzed, we procrastinate, we stay up at night spinning in our repetitive negative mental constructs, we do everything we can to fight the fear or avoid the pain. It’s exhausting! And it has never worked for me.

I am tired of fighting fear.

In my podcast with Emerging Women Live 2015 speaker Elizabeth Gilbert (best-selling author of Eat Pray Love and The Signature of All Things), we question the standard meaning of the word “fearless.”

There’s a sense that fearlessness means we will try anything without regard for consequence, that we will take risk with no attention to repercussions, that we will leap off of buildings with nothing holding us back. These actions are brazen, but real fearlessness – real courage – is when we take action while feeling our fear and discomfort at the same time.

“People who are without fear actually scare me.” -Elizabeth Gilberttwitter

Here’s a little secret that I don’t often share – I dread public speaking. Or I should say: I dread the time leading up to the time when I am to speak. Once I am on stage, I feel comfortable, but the minutes, hours, and weeks leading up to that time are sheer torture. I feel like I am carrying a big weight on my shoulder that follows me everywhere.

But guess what? No matter how hard I try, I cannot avoid the public speaking part of what I am creating with Emerging Women. And so I stick with it – and bring my fear with me. Liz Gilbert goes so far as to say “have some reverence for your fear,” for it has treated you well, kept you alive in a world filled with dangers.

Courage comes from the French word coeur, meaning heart.

I love this because it brings a feminine perspective into the word courage, which for many years I have associated with the masculine paradigm – swinging swords, life-risking heroism, dangerous acts of self-sacrifice. But when we think of Courage as coming from the heart…..well, Sisters, we got this!

How are Fear and Courage showing up in your life right NOW? Share your story with the tribe in the comments section – we learn so much about ourselves by hearing from each other!

Big Love,

Chantal Pierrat

Founder, Emerging Women

Join Chantal Pierrat, Elizabeth Gilbert, Dr. Jane Goodall, Dr. Tererai Trent, Brené Brown and more at Emerging Women Live 2015 in San Francisco. Early Bird tickets to see are available NOW. Get yours before they’re gone!

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Unleash the Power of Your Voice with KC Baker

We’ve all felt it – the sweaty palms, the racing heart, the dry mouth that comes with public speaking. Making yourself vulnerable in front of a room full of strangers can be crazy intimidating! If public speaking is a big hurdle for you in getting your truth out there to the world, then consider KC Baker your track and field coach.

We are so excited to have KC speaking at Power Party San Francisco on April 24th at Parisoma. Her work to empower female speakers has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, The Daily Love, and Women 2.0, and Origin Magazine hailed her as “One of the Top Planetary Changemakers.”

KC is currently sharing a video training series: “The 5 Keys to Women’s Thought Leadership.” Her goal is to help you get clear on what you stand for, set yourself free from doubt, and get your ideas out there. Check it out, and get excited about what KC will bring to Power Party San Francisco!

Reserve your space for #PowerPartySanFran or sign up for the free livestream HERE.

Like what you’re hearing? Dive deeper with us this October at Emerging Women Live 2014.