Public speaking is one of those things that seem very simple, yet many people have a hard time with it. Whether it is the thought of others not liking the physical appearance, or the idea that they will not be a fan of what is being said, it can cause a tremendous amount of stress. If you are concerned about public speaking anxiety, here are a few tips that should help make things easier to handle.
One reason why many people have trouble with public speaking anxiety is the fact that they are far too hard on themselves. While we are all human and will make mistakes sometimes in life, it is sometimes hard not to chastise yourself too harshly for this. Yes, you may make an error and forget half of what you were going to say, but that is not the end of the world. The key is to shrug it off and do your best. This will help reduce a great of the anxiety you may be feeling.
Don’t Worry About Forgetting Every Word
There are many people who believe every great speaker out there remembers each word of the speeches they wrote. While some of them do, others have improvised and tried their best to get the point across. Whether you believe it or not, as long as you convey your message to the audience many of them will not care if you did not use every word you intended to.
Try To Be Natural
Have you ever watched a speech and the person talking came across as stiff and boring? This is the last thing you want to happen if you expect to impress your audience. Instead of reading mindlessly from a script, try to incorporate a few layers of your personality. Since that is something that comes naturally, your speech will flow a lot smoother.
Speak About Your Interests
If you are the one choosing the subject of your speech, try finding something that is quite interesting to you. In the event that the subject is predetermined, you should focus on aspects of the topic that are intriguing and/or exciting for you. Many people suffer from public speaking anxiety because they are bored with the topic and they are worried about that being conveyed when they speak. Choosing to speak about things that interest you will decrease the chances of this being a problem for you.
Visit The Venue
When things are unfamiliar to many people, that makes them feel a lot more intimidated. The fact that you may be speaking in a venue full of unknown faces can make things more uncomfortable than they have to be. If you are interested in reducing some of this public speaking anxiety, you should consider visiting the venue and allowing yourself to become comfortable with the space. While you will still have to worry about talking to strangers, the idea of doing it in a place that is slightly familiar should ease some of your woes.
Ask For Concessions To Be Made
This does not mean that you should start acting like a diva and demanding all types of ridiculous things. You should focus on asking for things that will help decrease your anxiety level before it is time for you to speak. For example, if herbal tea always soothes you, ask for a box of it to be made available to you.
Dress The Part
Whether you believe it or not, the way you dress means a lot when it comes to giving a great speech. If you are not dressed appropriately, it can turn your anxiety level up and make things worse. Dressing well can help you feel much better about yourself, which can give your speech a much-needed boost. Even if you are wearing something that is not typical for you, try adding a familiar item to ease your tension. Examples of great items would be your favorite tie or earrings.
Get Plenty Of Practice
Even though you may have been responsible for writing your own speech, it does not mean that you have it all in the bag. It is a good idea to practice as much as you can. Even if you are only going to speak for a few minutes, it is important to practice. This will ensure that you are at your best when it is time for you to stand up and start speaking.
Sleep Well The Night Before
One thing that can never be disputed is the importance of sleep. While you may think of it as an unnecessary evil, the reality is that you need to get enough of it if you expect to function well. If you are not able to get any sleep the night before your speech, this is almost a guarantee that you will not do as well as possible. Try your best to go to bed a bit earlier than normal since you may be tossing and turning due to anxiety. Getting at least 6-8 hours of sleep is preferable, so try your best to make it happen.
Eat Well Beforehand
Do you eat so heavily sometimes that it makes you feel sluggish and heavy? This is not something you want to worry about while you are speaking in front of a crowd. Yes, it is necessary for you to eat that day, but try having something light instead of pigging out. If you are still hungry after your speech, you can feel free to have a large meal. Great light fare ideas include salads, wraps, fruit and yogurt.
Speaking in front of others is a skill that many people build over time. Others have so much public speaking anxiety that this is similar to having an impossible dream. Instead of sticking yourself into the latter group, you should do everything you can to combat your fears. Using the advice here should help you drum up the courage to start speaking and do it well.