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Marines Offer Free Workshop to Help Servicemembers to Overcome Phobias

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February 15,2012
By Lance Cpl. Derrick Irions

The fear of public speaking frequently tops the average phobia in various surveys taken around the world.

Camp Pendleton's Marine Corps Family Team Building offers a free workshop for service members and their families to learn and improve the basic techniques of public speaking through practical application.

The Speaking With Style workshop is an interactive course directed toward those interested in improving their communication skills, whether it is to promote a business, address an audience or just to gain more personal confidence.

"At any given time we can be asked to give a speech," said Miguel Juarez, life skills program trainer, MCFTB. "This class is about giving people the confidence to go in front of an audience and do just that.”

The course covers methods to help choose a topic, assess the type of audience being addressed and use proper posture to show enthusiasm.

“Every class I teach has the same content, I just conduct it differently depending on what kind of group I’m speaking to,” said Juarez. “For instance, I tell Marines that they need to do this, that and this. I can’t do that with civilians; they don’t like to be told what to do.”

By completing the workshop, individuals will have a better understanding of gathering thoughts, creating a speech structure and delivering a speech, said Juarez.

“The best part of the class was the [practical application],”said Staff Sgt. Joseph Chinea, family readiness officer, 1st Maintenance Battalion. “[Public speaking] is important for Marines because we’re always speaking in front of others.”

Phobias, generally, are self-created mental illusions therefore it is not a surprise that public speaking is one of the most common. Overcoming a fear can be difficult, but workshops such as Speaking With Style are readily available for individuals to take part in.

For additional information, call MCFTB at (760) 763-7890 or visit the Marine Corps Community Services website for future programs at www.mccscp.com/lifeskills.

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