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Overcome Your Public Speaking Fear - Online - Chicago

at Zenspeak - Public Speaking Center - Online

Course Details
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Chicago, Illinois 60605
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Class Level: All levels
Age Requirements: 18 and older
Average Class Size: 15

What you'll learn in this public speaking class:

This is an online course. Zoom link will be sent to you upon enrollment.

Overcome public speaking fear with gradual exposure, in a supportive environment. Based out of New York City for 30 years, we are now offering these classes online to an international audience.

Once the 10 session package is purchased, the student may use their sessions however they choose. The course is ongoing, so each session has participants at all levels. We use a workbook which each student works through at their own pace.

This is the 30th year we’ve been helping people turn their dread into confidence. Gradual exposure allows you to face fear in manageable steps, at your own pace, in a supportive environment. Instructors Charles di Cagno and Kyra Smith, are phobia therapists, and former and current Directors of Public Speaking at White Plains Hospital Anxiety Treatment Center in the United States.

Whatever the level of public speaking, we can help you improve. For those with anxiety, we provide gradual exposure to public speaking through a step ladder of basic to more advanced exercises. For the more experienced, it's a platform tailored to your specific needs to improve various delivery techniques. It is self-paced, in a low pressure, supportive environment with lots of feedback to address your specific issues. Begin with basic exercises and move forward only when ready.

The course is ongoing, with a mix of beginning and advanced students. Our hope is you are inspired, not intimidated by the dynamic speakers present, and keep in mind they started with the same fears, progressing to their present level by consistent effort. The course is not difficult. If you have the will, we offer the way to turn a liability into your most powerful asset. The real challenge is admitting you need guidance, getting started, and making a committed, consistent effort.

Our 100% success rate over 20 years for wedding speeches is just one indication of our effectiveness. But, whatever the challenge, (formal presentation, group discussion, business meeting, sales, confrontation, employment interview) the program is customized to fit your needs.

Sample Gradual Exposure Program Outline for Public Speaking Anxiety:

  • Session One - Get comfortable hearing your voice in public by responding to very simple questions while seated. The questions (i.e., name, occupation, where you live, etc.) require little thought or content.
  • Session Two - Learning to stand confidently before a group. You will stand, with several others and respond to simple questions. As your confidence increases, one by one, each person standing will sit, until you are standing alone. You will continue until this begins to feel comfortable.
  • Session Three - This exercise is the same as the previous one except you start by standing alone.
  • Session Four - Gestures and Movement. Enhance your message, decrease tension and project a confident demeanor incorporating non-verbal skills.
  • Session Five - Implement the skills learned in the session four by relating a personal experience using gestures and movement to enhance your narrative.
  • Session Six - Respond to Questions. Open the floor to questions on a topic of choice.
  • Session Seven - Impromptu Speaking. Learn to organize and deliver an unprepared (no notes) talk.
  • Session Eight - Prepared Speech (Instructor Guided). Learn the secret of outlining and presenting a prepared speech with minimal effort or stress.
  • Session Nine - Prepared Speech. Outline and deliver a speech unassisted.

Once you have mastered the above you can begin simulating all manner of interpersonal and public communication including:

  • Persuasive Speaking
  • Panel Discussion
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Defending your Position
  • Debating
  • Initiating and Sustaining Conversation
  • As well as many others

We look forward to working with you.

Materials: A link to purchase the $25 class workbook will be provided upon signup.


  • The course is ongoing, so each session has participants at all levels. We use a workbook which each student works through at their own pace. The program can be tailored to your particular needs.
  • For example: work related exercise can be simulated for those facing presentations in the workplace.

Important Note Regarding Class Dates: 

The Classes are ongoing, and students can attend on days that are convenient for them. When you book, you are not attached to the dates listed, but they should be used as a guide to let you know when the upcoming classes are. This flexible schedule is designed to meet the needs of busy professionals.

Still have questions? Ask the community.

Refund Policy

Note: This provider has a temporary cancellation policy for COVID-19 related cancellations which is as follows: 

Cancellations made 3 or more days in advance will receive a full credit for a rescheduled date with this provider 


Original cancellation policy (non-COVID-19):

No refunds given. Unexplained absence exceeding 60 days results in forfeiture of credits.   


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School: Zenspeak - Public Speaking Center

Zenspeak - Public Speaking Center

Overcome public speaking fear with gradual exposure, in a supportive environment.

We have been helping professionals, with moderate to severe public speaking issues, become dynamic, confident communicators in virtually any speaking environment. The 100% success rate over 20 years for best man, and...

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