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Episode 29: Match your Internal Voice with your External Voice with Jeff Miller

Jeff Miller shares how to speak creatively and courageously and the impact we can have when we get out of our own way.

About Jeff

Jeff is a public speaking and transformation coach. Currently working with people who have a message to put out into the world. He has developed a coaching process that challenges presenters to think about their outcomes, understand the neuroscience of learning, and use strategies that engage and meet their audience’s needs. He has coached facilitators, keynote speakers, teachers, workshop leaders, podcast hosts, actors, writers, and corporate leaders to magnify their voice, craft impactful messages, and deliver them in original and engaging ways.

Jeff’s approach stresses knowing your outcomes and understanding how an audience best takes in new information. By focusing on the moment before, during, and after learning he helps teachers, leaders, and speakers of every caliber and experience level to become more clear, intentional, and impactful in front of their students, teams, and audience.

Jeffrey volunteers his time working with youth to help them to discover and empower their artistic voices. He has created theatre camps, writing workshops, and a student film festival for teens. He looks for unique opportunities to grow and stretch his own voice including studying with a Native American storyteller, doing improv, meditating in silence for 10 days straight, and teaching accelerated learning camps in Asia. He lives in Los Angeles, California with his wife Ambar where they write, perform, play, and chase their dreams together.

Courage Up Moment

He had a very big summer after his senior year of high school. His two best friends were going to different colleges from him. He had no language on how to express what their friendship meant to him. He felt like he was blowing up friendships with silence or not having the ability to articulate. By the time he was preparing for the fall, he felt really isolated.

During his freshman year, he encountered a negative experience. His first courageous conversation was with his parents to tell them what happened.

The biggest lesson for him was that courageous conversations can be uncomfortable for a lot of reasons, but one thing that doesn't have to be uncomfortable is the idea that his voice matters. The belief that we all have something important.

First Step to Having Courageous Conversations

  1. Recognizing you have value. You have something important to say. That your thoughts and feelings matter. Courage in understanding your own thoughts.

  2. The message I have for the world or the thoughts I need to share, that information is important.

Signs of Effective Courageous Conversations

Starts with awareness. What is my intention, need, or desire to communicate? Why do I feel like it is important to communicate?

Coaching Courageous Conversations

  • Development of the internal and external voice

  • Getting tools to practice ideas and thoughts in other ways.

  • Getting out of your own way and speak to the audience.

  • The message becomes the centerpiece

Internal vs. External Voice

Internal voice is all past tense and future tense, and has nothing to do with what is present. With the art of conversation, there is a duality and the other half matters. A lot of Jeff’s fears happen when he tries to predict or project his thoughts onto others. He’s constantly surprised how people are willing to be flexible and support him when he simply says his needs.


Take time with self. Take time to articulate why you’re interested in having the conversation.


If we express our needs, we have a better chance of getting them met.

Courage Song:



Connect With Jeff

Connect With Ming:

Instagram: @mingshelby

Facebook: Ming Shelby

Listen to songs on the Courage Up Playlist!

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