LAC 12 | Public Speaking


With public speaking being one of the top fears of many people, it is imperative for every leader to not only learn this valuable skill but also know how to harness it to communicate with their teams and their organization with confidence and clarity. Today, Benny Salas, the Founder and CEO of That Coaching Guy, delves into how you can build your confidence to speak more and overcome your fear of public speaking. Benny’s experience with his offender at six years old ingrained a belief that kept him from becoming a great communicator, and only dealing with it head-on allowed him to break free from those chains. Going deeper into the conversation, he also identifies three aspects of speaking with confidence. With a tremendous wealth of experience in professional speaking, Benny brings so much value to this episode to help you find your voice. Let your confidence speak for you and tune in to this episode to find confidence to SPEAK MORE.

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Overcome Your Fear Of Public Speaking With Benny Salas

It’s one of my favorite topics we’re going to talk about with this expert that I have for you. Let me tell you a little bit about Benny, and then we’ll bring him on and we’ll have this amazing discussion all around confidence and speaking. I love communication. Benny Salas, a dynamic and sought-after professional speaker, is also an ICF-certified Executive Coach known for blending storytelling and communication techniques to empower individuals in both their personal and professional growth.

With a wealth of experience spanning many years in professional speaking, coaching, training, and development, Benny serves as the driving force behind That Coaching Guy Inc., where he holds the positions of Founder and CEO. His exceptional expertise is directed towards companies, leaders, executives, business owners, and their teams.

Having engaged with audiences totaling over 100,000 individuals through live stages, virtual platforms, and content creation, Benny’s impact as a speaker is profound. Over the past dozen years, he has been mastering his coaching skills, conducting more than 2,500 client sessions and delivering more than 20,000 hours of training content. I am super excited to welcome my friend and guest, Benny Salas, That Coaching Guy.

Hey, Benny.

How are you?

I am wonderful. I’m so thankful that you were able to make it despite your tragic injury. We had to postpone.

It’s called I had another birthday. That’s all it is.

I’m so thankful that you were able to make it to this episode because this topic is so vital and important in businesses, even if you’re a leader of your own business, but also if you are in an organization and looking to elevate your position. You have a wealth of education and background in both the industry as well as yourself. Tell me. How did you start? How did you narrow all your experience into focusing on speaking?

First of all, I’m excited to be a guest here. We have met in several ways when I asked, “Can I be on your show?” I’ve been seeing you. You cross my feeds all the time. I’m like, “I want to get on that show,” so thank you so much for having me. I appreciate that. You are a wealth of knowledge, too. I’ve heard you speak. You’re the If we still use that, it’s still viable.

I got started in speaking very early. At the age of nineteen, I was asked to speak to a group of students. I felt at the moment I wasn’t Benny. I was in my full superpower. My mind exploded. Everything started to come to me. As I look at every job, I normally say this and admit this to a few people. I said I used to suck as an employee because I was always thinking outside the box. I told my wife this and she goes, “I suck as an employee, too.” That might be a book right there like How to Suck As An Employe But Still Build Your Business.

I realized that for me, it was this connection that I had with the stage. I had this connection that I had not just on stage but with an audience. How do you take them through an experience? I would even go back a few years prior that my background was in performing arts. Early on, I was in the performing arts. I was a dance major in high school. I majored in Spanish dance, flamenco. I majored in hip-hop. I majored in jazz and modern. That was a form of expression.

What I felt for me was that the moment I was on center stage or the moment that it was go time, I knew how to step into it. I cultivated that. I always found in whatever work I was doing where I could step into that same space. As I look at every opportunity, career, job, or project, I say, “What was the common theme between all of them? Where can I connect the dots and find my superpower?” It was in speaking and communication.

While we suck at being employees, and I’m in that club too and had to do my own thing, there are people who tune in to this show that are wonderful, amazing employees but are looking to elevate how they show up. Learning to communicate and speak builds your confidence. I’m asking you this question. It’s a real question. I used to be someone who was very intimidated by standing up and speaking in front of anybody.

This is as a grown adult. Standing up and speaking in front of anyone intimidated me. How do you help your clients or help people who are looking for leadership roles break free of that real fear of stepping up? We’re not talking about on a stage. We’re not even getting to the stage yet. It is stepping up in front of a room of their peers, maybe 3 or 5 people, and being in the spotlight and speaking.

Most people who say they have a fear of speaking in public or public speaking or communicating, I don’t know if they’ve identified what the fear is about it. I like to say people don’t fear public speaking. They fear public speaking. Our biggest fear isn’t what we say. It’s what people will say about us. The idea and the concept around this whole fear are rooted in what we think other people perceive about us. We’re like, “Are they going to accept us or reject us? Will I be blackballed? Will I be blacklisted? Will I be put in a different category if I truly express what I feel and what I know?”

People don't fear public speaking; they fear THE public speaking. Our biggest fear isn't what we say; it is what people will say about us. Click To Tweet

We’re like, “Am I saying it wrong? I’m going to be ridiculed. Am I going to say something that people are going to think I know what I’m talking about?”

We’re like, “Am I going to be an Imposter? Are people going to call me out?” There are all of these factors. Here’s the challenge. The challenge is that we have something to say, but we feel that it’s stifled by what we think other people are going to say. When we can address that issue alone, what ends up happening is we can have a better sense of, “Here’s what it is and here’s what it isn’t.”

Most of us don’t get there because what we do is we do three things. We believe the lie, put the label, and accept the limiting belief. It’s called a lie, a label, and a limiting belief. When all three of those are in motion, we’re stuck because you believe the lie. This goes so much deeper than being in front of an audience. This has been about how you’ve been with yourself.

That is so deep. You don’t even have self-trust.

If you keep lying to yourself about you, what do you think other people think about you? Here’s the thing. I tell people, “Stop talking yourself out of the thing that keeps speaking to you.” How many times do you say, “I’m going to do this,” but you talk yourself out? You’ve been practicing this all along. The moment that you have an opportunity, you’re self-defeated. Your mindset isn’t there. There’s so much deep diving and work that we have to do as coaches to help people break free.

Maybe someone is reading and they read that, then they’re like, “I’m going to go out and not believe the lie anymore. I can step on stage and do this.” It doesn’t work like that.

I’m like, “You first need to step up as a leader before you can step up on stage. Let’s talk about the issues that you do know about that you won’t mention.” That’s the misconception. The misconception is, “When I feel confident, I’ll do it.” The question is you need to do it so that you can build your confidence. You need to do it afraid. You need to do it with some knowledge, wisdom, and clarity. Whether you are in business and you’re a business leader or an employee, there are all of these moving parts that are happening simultaneously that limit us. I posted something that said, “The thing that is holding you back is the thing you won’t let go of.”

LAC 12 | Public Speaking

Public Speaking: Step up first as a leader before you step up on the stage.


You won’t let go of the fact that people may make fun of you. For me, my story was my offender at six years old told me, “If you tell your parents, they’ll be mad at you.” That’s what my offender told me. As an adult, I adopted this ideology and this theory that people won’t accept me. People won’t approve of me. They’ll laugh at me. It wasn’t until I dealt with that through therapy and all these different measures that I was able to really find who Benny was as a communicator. When we don’t address those things that we bring into the workplace, our clients, and our own dreams and vision, then we never break free of that fear.

You are right. They’re the barriers to your own communication. We’re not even on the stage yet. We’re talking about how you communicate in a room of your peers and you have this fear of getting up to speak in front of them. That’s rooted in so many other areas that you’re unaware of and blinded to. Much like you, that was a big thing for me. I could communicate when I was a child very freely to anybody who would listen.

Over the course of certain events, I shut down my own voice and myself. A lot of that was being in my own trauma and fear of what other people would think of me because of being bullied, teased, and ridiculed for my accent, the way I spoke, the way I looked, and all of that. I shut myself down so that I would not be in that position of being judged and ridiculed again.

Most people do. A lot of people shut themselves down. Whether they’re in the workforce or starting their own business, they are silently frustrated by wanting more from themselves than what they’re putting out there. We talked about that. When you are speaking, you are building confidence. You’re building credibility, visibility, and accessibility when you are communicating.

You are building confidence, credibility, visibility, and accessibility when you communicate. Click To Tweet

If you can’t do that and you can’t be known and be heard, which all of our human desires are to be known, heard, and respected, think about what you’re doing by holding yourself back. We could see this manifested in employee relationships, how we talk to people who are our higher-ups, how we talk to people in business, and how we talk to people in general. We have to take an assessment of what was going on and find the support and help that we need to help build that confidence.

One of the other areas is to stop focusing so much on what you think they’re going to think about you and instead focus more on the benefit of delivering the message that you have to the people who need to hear it. I learned this several years ago, the detriment of the detriment. Someone taught me this. If you think there is someone who needs to hear your message or hear what you have to say and they don’t hear it, what is the detriment of them not hearing it?

What is the detriment to that detriment? You can go down that line. A lot of times, if you have a deep burning message that you need to share, it can be quite detrimental to the person who needs to hear it at that moment. You are the only person who can deliver it to them in a way that they can hear it. That exercise was powerful when I first heard it. That’s interesting.

I couldn’t agree with you more. We see that more in so many areas. That’s why when I think, “Why did I fall in love with this area?” I saw so much of my own breakthrough happen when I was able to speak more, communicate, and express how I felt. It wasn’t on a stage per se or even in the audience. It was, “What am I telling myself? What do I believe about who I am?” That’s where it starts. That’s where it has to begin for people. 

There are two things that I want to ask you. The first one is you mentioned Speak More. We’re going to talk some more about that because this is your whole movement. What do you say to people who say, “I’m introverted? I’m not a big speaker. I’d rather sit with my thoughts than tell anybody about it.”

Sometimes, it can be a good excuse. Also, you have to find ways for you to communicate. I’m an extrovert. I love being around people. I love holding the energy in the room. You’ve seen me do a presentation. You’ve seen me hosting. For me, that’s my sweet spot. For other people, they may be great at speaking, but in a more intimate setting. I don’t think it’s about what’s right or wrong. Think about what works for you.

There are introverts who speak on stage. As you said, it’s an excuse. It’s a reason for you to believe the lie that you can’t.

Also, where do we grow if we can’t be challenged to grow in areas that maybe we’ve not explored yet? In business, you’re constantly being challenged to grow with the trending market. You have to adjust, learn, and grow. For people who use that, “I can’t do that because I’m an introvert,” that’s an excuse. You don’t want to do it because you’re an introvert.

It’s a fixed mindset belief. You’re believing that’s not able to change.

They’re like, “I can’t learn anything else from this.”

We know about neuroplasticity. You are able to change. You need to step out with audacious confidence or boldness.

That’s it. You need the audacious confidence that Alicia has and that many of us have. I do believe that people need to find where they want to communicate. If you peel back the layers, you’ll find that there’s more that somebody could say. There’s more that they could communicate. There is something deeper and more profound that someone may want to share. The question is are they doing it?

LAC 12 | Public Speaking

Public Speaking: People need to find where they want to communicate because if you peel back the layers, you’ll find there’s more that somebody could say, there’s more that they could communicate, and there is something more profound that someone may want to share.


Some people say, “I don’t want to share that.” Everybody is different. There’s no one-size-fits-all for this. Based upon what somebody’s goals and objectives are, if they can look at the 30,000 foot and then say, “I’m only operating at 5,000 to 10,000, how do I get to 20,000?” that’s where you can grow and help coach or mentor somebody to get there.

We mentioned Speak More. We’re not talking about speaking on stage. We’re talking about speaking your story and speaking what’s valuable to someone else reading and doing that more often. Correct?

Absolutely. Speak More, for me, was a very spiritual experience. I’ll tell you how it originated, those two words coming together. I was sitting in the Little Haiti Cultural Center in Miami. They had an event. At this event, there were all these artists, musicians, and talented type folks. It was called Creative Collective. I go because I believe I’m creative. As a speaker and communicator, I’m creative. I’m there in the audience. Everybody is separating. They’re like, “You go here.” All of a sudden, I’m the only one still sitting. It was crickets. I’m looking around and I’m like, “Everybody is gone.”

I had this a-ha moment with God right there. I said, “God, what is my creative gift if I don’t identify?” This is how I heard it. I heard, “How did I create?” I said, “You spoke.” It was the words coming back to me, “Speak more then.” That’s how I launched Speak More. When I connected the dots to Speak More, it was the six-year-old who was told to be quiet. Speak More was the person who was a people pleaser and didn’t want anyone to not like him. I always wanted to be liked and affirmed.

Speak More was about me believing that I had something to say so I had to say something. Speak More was about the counselor who spoke on stage and said, “If you’ve ever been violated and this has ever happened to you, say something. Come and talk to me.” Speak More, before I knew it was Speak More, was evolving and growing. The story was being written. I had not had a moment to stop and ask, “What is it?” When I got that what I would call revelation and I had that a-ha moment, it changed everything for me. I no longer could sleep on it.

In 2018, I decided to do that. I decided to get on the stage. I began to share my story. I began to help other people do the same. That was a turning point for me. It was realizing that as a speaker of many years, it wasn’t about me speaking. It was about helping others find their voice as well. It was about helping others find their message, connect their story, and captivate their audience. It was me bringing everything to something that I could look at and say, “This has an origin story.”

We’ve done challenges and workshops. We’ve created a Speak More Academy. I’ve written the book 3 Core Essentials to Speaking with Confidence. We’re about to launch a two-day intensive and then a mastermind with this. It’s almost like I got sucked into Speak More. I didn’t think about it. I didn’t know it was going to happen that way.

That’s when the preparation and the divine opportunity connected. You’re like, “Here we are.”

Forget connect. That thing collided. It has even changed my coaching. It has changed the way of who I want to coach. I need to coach people who have a message that needs to be conveyed and expressed. It’s not always conveyed and expressed in terms of stages. It can be expressed through leadership. It can be expressed through management. It can be expressed through written, oral, visual, or video, whatever that looks like for you. What is your Speak More moment?

It’s all about communication and effective communication. You shared an assessment with me that I’m so grateful for because it’s made an impact on many audiences that I speak to that I get the opportunity to present in front of. I thank you for that.

You’re welcome.

I went to the session that you did and you shared that. I thought that was really powerful in helping people communicate better. I want to ask you. You mentioned the book 3 Core Essentials to Speaking with Confidence. Can you tell us what those three core essentials are?

Absolutely. There are many essentials and I focused on three core. I felt like you have to know your why, what, and who. Why are you speaking? What are you speaking about? Who do you want to speak to? You could spend the rest of your life on those three. Why do I want to speak? What’s the burning desire? This is peeling the layers off. This is pulling behind the curtain. What’s behind the scenes? What’s your why?

It’s sad when you hear people get to a certain point in life when they don’t know their why. They’ll communicate that but they’ll never communicate what their why was all along. It’s interesting. It starts off with the why. The second thing it starts off with is the what. What do you want to speak about? Getting clarity around your message and your story is essential. Everybody has a story. Therefore, everybody has a message, whether you’re an introvert, extrovert, outrovert, or whatever vert. I don’t care what kind of vert.

LAC 12 | Public Speaking

Public Speaking: Getting clarity around your message and story is essential because everybody has a story. Therefore, everybody has a message.


If you have lived more than a year in life, you have a story. A one-year-old could tell you their birth story.

Your story is the details of what the bigger message is. When I help people understand their mission in life, what I’m asking them is, “What’s the message you’re willing to die for? If I’m driving down I-95 and I see a billboard and it’s got a few words with your face on it, what am I going to remember about you?” That is your message.

For me, it has been around Speak More. I’ve connected my story as a child. I’ve connected what I’ve been doing as a professional. I’ve connected to what I’m doing moving forward and what the vision is. I had an opportunity at The Great American Speak Off. I was able to share my story in two minutes. This was a speaker competition here where they were looking for 100 golden tickets. In Miami, there were 6,000 people who registered. 600 showed up. I’m not surprised that many people didn’t show up. You could talk all you want, but you have to show up.

They’re not speaking. They’re talking.

I was 1 of the 30 that got a golden ticket. My message was, “If you have something, then say something.” That is my Speak More model. If you have something, then say something. When I took that model, I said, “Let me turn this into a story.” I remember sharing it and it changed everything. It was like another notch on the belt or another pendant on my chest. Here’s the thing. I wasn’t impressed by me, I was impacted by me. It’s different.

It’s amazing when that happens. Sometimes, I do these web shows and my webcast where it’s me and I’m speaking more. I’m not interviewing a guest but I’m sharing my message of confidence with people. It’s like you’re channeling. You say something and you’re like, “That’s profound. That didn’t come from me. I didn’t think of that. That came through me.”

That’s the beauty. When we speak and we’re in the flow and in that zone, what’s in you is going to come out.

You hear it. You’re saying, “That’s pretty good.”

I quote me all day long. 

It is like, “I got to write that one down and remember it for later because that was pretty good.”

A lot of workshops have been birthed that way. A lot of speaking topics have been birthed that way. A lot of clarity. We are in the process of working on a book. It’s called When Confidence Speaks. It’s not speak with confidence, but when confidence speaks. What does it look like when you are in a place where your confidence speaks for you? We’re writing that book. We’ve laid out the chapters. We’re starting to record. I’m much better at speaking than writing, so I’m like, “I’m going to audio this thing, and then we’ll transcribe it on Jasper. Whatever AI software is out there, we’ll use because I am not going to kill myself writing when that’s not my sweet spot.”

That’s one of the strengths. When you understand your strengths, it’s so important. You’ll be frustrated all day trying to write a chapter for a book when you sit in front of the mic for 20 minutes and you have 3 chapters out.

In 2022 and 2023, I said, “I’m going to focus on speaking more. I’m going to get on more stages, more podcasts, more interviews, and more opportunities.” Don’t think that each one doesn’t come with its own fears, obstacles, or challenges. That’s the misconception. They’re like, “You’re confident.” You find new ways to overcome bigger hurdles. That’s it. 

It’s a misconception that each one did not come to public speaking without their own fear, obstacles, and challenges. You just find new ways to overcome bigger hurdles. Click To Tweet

Another level, another devil. Every time you step in front of a different audience, you don’t know what you’re going to get. You don’t know how they’re going to receive your message if they’ll receive your message or you. It is always a challenge. I sit here and I record an episode. I don’t know how people are going to receive it, but I have to, out of the abundance that’s in me, give that message that’s inside of me and trust and believe it’ll impact the right people.

My fear of speaking, when I knew I had to do it and stop hiding from it, was very visceral for me. I was at an event where the message that was being taught on stage was my message, but I wasn’t the one giving it. Someone else was giving that message. I didn’t step up to even apply or let people know that I could speak on that or that was a passion inside of me.

This was at my church. I was doing some other things. I was out in the lobby preparing some stuff. I was hearing the message. This is how visceral it was to me. I couldn’t escape. My physical body couldn’t stand there anymore. I climbed under a table. I had the table cloth draped over and I hid myself under the table. 

I’m envisioning it.

I heard people walking by saying, “Where’s Alicia?” I was under the table. I was like, “I can’t believe it.” That stuff was the moment for me that I knew I had to break free of my own fear and step out and step into something bigger than myself. That’s the difference with speaking. It has to be bigger than you where you forget your own fear.

It’s so interesting. There’s a quote that I wrote down years ago that said, “Your passion will frustrate you until the focus is you.” It will frustrate you when other people are telling the story that should have come out of your mouth. You’ll not like people because you want to be like that. You want their confidence. They make you mad because that should be you. People need to be consciously aware of that.

For years, I sat back watching and I almost felt comfortable helping people tell their stories while I was frustrated that I couldn’t tell mine. That’s the truth. Either you tell your story or you’ll be watching and helping somebody tell theirs. You have to figure out how you want to impact the world and how you want to leave this Earth.

LAC 12 | Public Speaking

Public Speaking: Either you tell your story or you’ll be watching and helping somebody tell theirs.


I love what Erwin McManus said. He said, “When I leave this Earth, I want to leave empty. It’s not because I had nothing to give, but because I gave everything I had.” That’s how I see myself as a speaker and as a communicator. Whether I’m doing a workshop, a training, a keynote, a 5-minute, a 10-minute, a 30-minute, or a 1-hour, I’m going to give you all that I have at that moment because I don’t know if it’s the last one.

I love it. It’s so vital for people to break free of their own stuff and learn how to communicate more effectively with each other and then with the group. Work on your interpersonal communication. Those are the skills. You’re not born orators. You’re not born a natural knowing how to read a room and how to communicate. There are tools. Benny is amazing at doing that. I work with communication with leaders as well.

Learn the tools and skills so that you can communicate better, listen better, and be more effective in the job that you are in or the work or the position, wherever you are. You could be more effective in that. I’m going to give you a last minute, and then we’re going to jump into Rapid-fire. You shared so much of your heart about speaking and I appreciate that so much. Is there anything else you want to share about communicating before we head into the other section here on the show? 

I would say find the molds, the platforms, and the opportunities that best suit you. Social media has been a beautiful thing and it’s been brutal at the same time. People could fake it until they make it or you’re scrolling through and comparing yourself. We have to remove that idea of comparison because there’s nobody like you. It’s not are you like them? The question is there’s nobody like you. Some people don’t even like how they sound.

Find the molds, platforms, and opportunities that best suit you. Click To Tweet

That was me. I didn’t like how I looked. I didn’t like how I sounded. It was cringy. I couldn’t even look back at myself.

Those saboteurs that oftentimes allow us or permit us to judge ourselves very harshly don’t give us the ability to be free in our communication. As corny or as cheesy as this may sound, it’s so important to find that place where you do love yourself and your message. You love how you show up. There are tweaks and techniques of how we don’t use filler words and don’t say, “Right.” I’ve had to be careful. I used to say, “Right, guys?” That’s a Chicago enemy. Before, I was like, “I said right 30 times.”

It’s trusting yourself again to open up and be connected. If you stay ready, you never have to worry about getting ready. I’m always ready. If someone said, “Could you speak tomorrow for an hour?” I’m going to be up all night, but I’m going to do it. I’m going to say yes. I’m going to make it happen. I always want to challenge myself to be better.

For many years, I was bitter and not better. I was comparing, looking, and wanting. I was like, “Why didn’t I get that opportunity? Why didn’t they call me?” I said, “I’m going to step into my superpower, and I’m going to walk humbly.” Every time I speak on a stage, I’m humbled by it. There are a lot of speakers who have a lot of ego and pride. They think they’re communicators, speakers, leaders, or whatever. Let’s stay in a place of humility and be grateful that we can share messages.

Speak, be on stages, and be in front. How important is that for leaders?

It sets them apart. It puts them on the front line. Think about this. If you’ve ever gone to a conference or a workshop, normally, you select the leader of the group the one who’s most vocal.

That’s because afterward, they usually say, “You present what people are talking about. You do it.”

What that does for people is that other people trust that person. I put this on Threads that communicating builds trust and authenticity with people when they feel safe with what you’re saying. A lot of people don’t speak up because they don’t feel safe. It’s not their environment. It’s not their energy. They don’t know that person. They’re like, “I’m not going to be vulnerable and transparent.” There are all of these things that sometimes block us from being present in the moment.

When a person is able to communicate as a leader, it builds trust, credibility, and authority. Think about the person who’s willing to step up. This is why we need more women stepping up. This is why we men need to take a backseat and allow other women to step up. We need to show that we can share spaces. This is why we have to make sure that we’re communicating. Authority is powerful, and when it’s done right, it’s beautiful.

Are you ready for Rapid-fire?

I didn’t even know I had that answer in me. I’m going to tell you something. I might need to record this again.

I’ll send you the clip. I have some questions for you. First of all, what’s the biggest leadership mistake you personally made or was the victim of?

The biggest leadership mistake I made was that I spoke more than I listened. One of the most powerful tools we have as communicators is our ability to listen. It’s not talking. That’s crazy because we’re talking about speaking and communication. 

Communication is a two-way street. You can’t communicate effectively if you are not listening or you’re not allowing someone else to hear and absorb what you’re saying.

It’s exactly what you’re saying. I would’ve spent more time listening to the problem instead of talking about solutions that I didn’t have enough information on as a leader. I would go back and course-correct that. There were a lot of missed opportunities that I felt I missed out on because I wanted to rush the process or I wanted to be seen. I was always talented and gifted in certain areas, but it wasn’t my time yet, and I didn’t know how to handle that.

The 30-year-old Benny is different than the 46-year-old Benny. Half that stuff, I would be like, “Come on. Relax. Take it easy.” I would trust the process, ask myself the tough questions, and allow other people to ask me the tough questions. I receive feedback way differently now than before. We’ll move on to the next one after I share this. I remember my client telling me, “You’re really good at listening.” I was like, “Do you think so? I thought I was horrible at it.” I realized how much I progressed in actively listening and using those tools. It’s not just what it means to me, but what it means to the person who’s sharing it with me. That’s changed my life in general to not always think in terms of me but us.

That’s important when you get feedback from other people that you don’t believe the old belief that you have. If you’re trying to work at something and you get the feedback that it’s working but then you step back with your words like, “I’m horrible at that,” you’re not honoring the work that you put into it to get better at it. You’re believing the old belief instead of the new person that you’re striving to become. If you were cast away on a deserted island and you could only bring 3 things or hope that these 3 things washed ashore, what would these 3 things bring be? One cannot be a cell phone.

I’d bring the Bible because I got to feed my faith. I’m sure on that island, it’s going to get really lonely. I was a pastor for many years, so I did full-time ministry. I was Bible College trained. My faith has evolved. It’s grown and matured beyond church but into a worldview that I see God differently and I see people differently.

Let’s say it’s not you bringing it with you. You’re a castaway, so it fell. It was air-dropped or it was washed up on shore.

I would bring seeds of vegetables so I can plant something and eat something.

Vegetable seeds were in some of those packages that were washed up.

I don’t know. Maybe a knife or something. You got to cut, kill, and whatever. That’s what I would say.

You can make fire. Who’s someone who inspires you every day?

It’s my wife and my kids because they give me purpose for showing up every day. Success will be measured at the end. How my son becomes a great gentleman, my daughter becomes a great woman, and my wife continues to step into her purpose and her life. For me, that is what is motivating me to show up and be the father that I’ve always envisioned.

Maybe I didn’t always have all the tools or I made some bad choices in my life, but I’m grateful that I see so much in my kids of everything that I would’ve imagined. I love being a father. I’m so glad we’re out of that baby stage, but I love being a father. For me, that’s what inspires me and the world in general. It’s nobody specifically but the world out there. We always look for that big person when we don’t realize there’s a big person inside that small person. We got to pull it out.

We always look for that big person. We don't realize there's a big person inside that small person; you just have to pull it out. Click To Tweet

You could be inspired by yourself every day.

I love me.

I love me, too.

I love me some Benny.

If you could choose one person real or fictional from the past or present to break bread with and sit down for a few hours, who would that be?

Honestly, if I think of somebody who would be intriguing, it would be 1 or 2 people. It would have to be Jesus or Martin Luther King. I had an opportunity to preach years ago to do a leadership talk in one of the churches that Martin Luther King was at when he was in seminary. I remember walking through the hallways and seeing pictures of him, and being so in awe of what this man was thinking and how God used him. The fight that he was in. That took so much courage. The mindset, the heart, the will, and the humility. There’s nobody greater that’s ever walked the Earth than who Jesus is. His life, His story, and His testimony. Whether you believe Him or not is not up to me. Even if you read it as fictional or nonfictional, you cannot deny the power of this man’s life and His purpose. For me, that’s a blueprint. 

This is the final question. What are you reading or what are your three favorite titles?

LAC 12 | Public Speaking

Do It! Speaking: 77 Instant-Action Ideas to Market, Monetize, and Maximize Your Expertise

One of them is called Do It! Speaking by David Newman. It is a book on building your speaker business. It’s also one that lays out such a phenomenal groundwork and structure. The second one is You Are the Brand by Mike Kim. Mike Kim has been mentoring me. I’m joining his mastermind program. I feel so blessed that I came across him. It’s one of those Godsend things that happened. Neil Cavuto connected me with Mike. Nick and I connected where you and I met. We’ve been able to be friends and still stay connected.

For the third one, I’ve been in between a few of them that I check out, but it is Donald Miller’s Business Made Simple. Donald Miller also wrote Building a StoryBrand. I like books that challenge me in that sense. Those are the three. I’ve been dipping into this book a little bit called Crucial Conversations as well. It’s for leaders and how leaders can talk at a high level when the stakes are high. These are some books that I got. 

Thank you so much, Benny. I appreciate you.

Thank you.

For those of you out there who are reading, I encourage you to lead yourselves, lead your teams, and lead your organization with audacious confidence.


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About Benny Salas

LAC 12 | Public SpeakingBenny Salas, a dynamic and sought-after professional speaker, is also an ICF certified Executive Coach known for blending storytelling and communication techniques to empower individuals in both their personal and professional growth.

With a wealth of experience spanning over 25 years in professional speaking, coaching, training, and development, Benny serves as the driving force behind That Coaching Guy Inc., where he holds the positions of Founder and CEO. His exceptional expertise is directed towards companies, leaders, executives, business owners, and their teams.

Having engaged with audiences totaling over 100,000 individuals through live stages, virtual platforms, and content creation, Benny’s impact as a speaker is profound. Over the past dozen years, he has been mastering his coaching skills, conducting more than 2,500 client sessions and delivering 20,000+ hours of training content.

Benny initiated the “SPEAK MORE” initiative to share his narrative, mindset, skillset, and toolset, enabling aspiring speakers to find their voice and purpose. Through this endeavor, he now educates individuals on projecting confidence, effectively connecting with audiences, and leveraging their influence for monetary gain. Benny’s vast 25 years of speaking experience are accessible worldwide through the SPEAK MORE academy, video courses, webinars, and live events.

Additionally, Benny is the author of “The 3 Core Essentials to Speaking with Confidence,” a downloadable resource that delves into the three critical facets communicators must grasp to engage their intended audience.

Benny’s academic achievements include a B.A. in Organizational Leadership from Trinity International University. He has received coaching training and certifications from Neighborworks, Central College of New Mexico, and the Coaching Training Institute (CTI), where he earned the Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC) designation. He holds accreditations from the International Coaching Federation as an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) and a Professional Certified Coach (PCC).


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