Any executive who works for a company, or owns their own business, has some serious skills. And even though jobs might be similar, each person is one-of-a-kind.

We go about our days using that unique combination of skills, experience, knowledge and perspective to achieve all kinds of things.

But when it comes time to communicate, we hardly ever draw on all of those skills. Somewhere along the way we’ve learned that there’s a “right way” to communicate, or we’ve seen someone else we feel we should emulate, especially when we’re called upon to appear on stage or onscreen. When there’s an audience counting on us, expecting us to wow them with our own unique vision and wisdom…we drop it in favor of some “formula” we’ve been taught.

Psychologists can have a field day explaining why. Fear certainly enters into it, nervousness, self-consciousness, etc. But the inevitable result is that we’re less effective than we are at any other time we’re at “work.”

Take note next time you communicate. Notice when you try to become someone else, alter the way you normally talk, feel stiff and nervous, or change your breathing. You’re effectively cutting off access to all the good stuff that makes you who you are.

Instead, why not learn how to extract the full value of your unique personality, no matter what you’re communicating? Why not feel “in the zone” when you’re speaking one-on-one or one-on-thousands? All those skills that got you where you are today can make your communications more effective while you’re simply being yourself.