This changed attitude is an indication that you are no longer limited by the fear. A variety of strategies can help you to calm yourself and reach this stage.
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Most people feel nervous when they give a presentation. The key is to control the negative manifestations of your nervousness and to channel the extra energy flow. Remember, many people feel nervous but not everyone shows their nervousness. Once you identify the ways you express your nervousness, you can use the following techniques to steady your wobbly knees and calm your racing heartbeat:. The best approach is to experiment with a combination of techniques and see what works best for you. We are all different and require unique methods to make us feel calm, cool, and in control.
Know that everyone has passed through the fear and everyone can come out of it. If the fear persists, it may be because you gave up too soon; delivering one or two more presentations might have been all that was required to break away from the fear for life. One of the best ways to overcome fear is to be adequately prepared. Nervousness is often produced by fear of the unknown.
If you are familiar with your presentation material, your anxiety about speaking will be reduced. If you have ever given the same presentation more than once, you will have experienced this already. Take the time to plan your presentation well. Use an organization template to make sure the information flows logically. Make sure you emphasize and repeat the key points you want people to remember. People can only absorb so much knowledge at one stretch in an auditory manner.
Study the guidelines about designing effective visuals.
5 Ways to Get Over Your Fear of Public Speaking
Most people include too much information on their slides. Write only the most basic information on the slide itself so you can play a meaningful role in fleshing out the information and argument. If there are additional details you want to share, include them in a handout. Identify how you will move smoothly from one point or section to the next.
Draw up a plan and rehearse till you feel like you could deliver the presentation in your sleep. The repetition will also help you identify any bugs in your talk before the real event. In short, the more you sweat while preparing the presentation, the less you will sweat while actually delivering it! Standing before a group of people to present your ideas often creates the feeling that you are delivering a monologue.
However, any presentation, regardless of how formal, is a dialogue because you are constantly receiving visual feedback from the audience.
You can reinforce the conversational aspect of presentations in your mind by using the following techniques:. One helpful step toward conquering your fear is to identify what it is you are afraid of.
How to Overcome Fear of Public Speaking: Three Ways
Some commonly expressed fears are:. To analyze your fears, ask yourself the following questions:. In life, you generally get what you expect. Learn to handle your inner critic and tell him or her that you can and will change.
Look into the mirror and give yourself positive affirmations to offset the negative self-talk and to make a breakthrough. Instead of saying you might forget what to say, tell yourself that you have reviewed and rehearsed so often that you could deliver the presentation well in your sleep! Visualization is kind of mental rehearsal.
It is a psychological process in which you prepare yourself to produce a positive result by imagining a future event in your mind. If you visualize yourself giving a successful, confident presentation, you are more likely to do so.
Never visualize yourself making mistakes, or you may subconsciously program yourself to do so. Expect a positive outcome as most winning personalities do.
Be confidently optimistic in your own abilities and expect a better tomorrow. If possible, walk around, introduce yourself and greet members of your audience before the presentation begins. In this way, you will be speaking to fewer strangers and are more likely to get a positive nod from the individuals you have already met. To minimize your fear, you also must accept that it is not your job to please every single person in the room.
Do your best to get your message across, focus on the positive responses you are picking up and forget the others. Although nervousness is caused by a mental lack of confidence, the body responds as if it were being threatened physically. In both situations, the body is reacting to stress. The following methods will help you relax. Progressive relaxation is a method of systematic tightening and loosening various muscles of your body until your entire body is in a relaxed state. The action of tightening and loosening enables you to feel the difference between the two states in a more pronounced way.
Guided imagery is a relaxation method which transports you mentally to a place which you associate with peace and restfulness the opposite of stress and thus allows your body to feel more relaxed before a presentation. Moving about before and during the presentation relaxes your muscles and processes excess adrenalin. So get up out of your chair and walk around a bit, in a relaxed way, where you can get away from the crowd for a short while.
Breathe deeply and slowly while others are speaking or before you are introduced and called upon to begin your presentation. If you're new to the world of public speaking, start small. Find a few friends and family to practice on.
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Begin by speaking to smaller groups and build up from there. The size of the audience makes no difference. If you know your topic, your pre-speaking fear will quickly evaporate. Nothing helps ease the fear of public speaking more than knowing your material. The ability to connect with your audience comes from having the confidence you won't get lost during your delivery. Rehearse several times before the big talk. Time your presentation and always have back up material in case time is left over.
Mastering the art of public speaking comes not from memorizing word for word your entire speech. The real pros know their material by remembering key points and prompts on subtopics and examples to cover. The majority of business presentations and speeches are boring monologues filled with endless PowerPoint slides and bullet points. Trash the PowerPoint presentation and make your material the focal point of the talk.
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If you do use PowerPoint, take the approach of using visuals that quickly convey your message. The most fearful moment of any presentation is the one minute before your stage entrance. Use the tactic of elite athletes by visualizing a positive outcome and using deep belly breathing to reduce stress and build confidence. Prior to your public speaking on stage introduce yourself to a few members of the audience in the front row.