Most people are afraid of public speaking more than anything else in their lives. Working professionals who learn how to communicate better and speak confidently in public earn on average 30% more than their pears who have not developed that skill. In my eBook on “The 3 P’s of Public Speaking“, I list preparation, practice and performance as the keys to turning every public speaking opportunity into a masterpiece.
There is a ritual I go through every time I have to go on stage to deliver a speech or give a presentation. This will be useful to you if you have experience with public speaking, or if you don’t have that much experience and really need help overcoming stage anxiety.
- Increase your heart bit rate. You can do this through breathing (take short breaths repetitively) and possibly physical exercises like jumping jacks in the bathroom or stretching.
- Engage in positive self-talk, out loud if possible. The fear of rejection is one of the root causes of stage anxiety. When the little voice in your head gives you reasons why you will not succeed, talk back to yourself. I carry a little card with positive encouraging messages every time I have to give a presentation. Just by reading my card, it makes me at ease.
- Focus on your audience, not on yourself. Every opportunity you have to address a group of people, you can change someone’s life for the better. If your message is important (and it is), focus on delivery it in a way that at least one person in the audience will be positively affected. If possible, have someone you know in the audience for an deeper emotional connection. I have noticed that I tend to give better presentations when I have familiar faces and friends in the audience. It makes a difference.
There is a video of my friend Robin Kelly on YouTube where she gives a lot of good useful tips on how to overcome stage anxiety. For your convenience, the video is below.
What is your experience with stage anxiety? Have you experienced it? How do you make yourself comfortable when giving a presentation?
Day 1 of 21: 100 words per day for 21 days. 356 words.