Are you afraid of public speaking because you are worried you might forget what you intended to say, your brain will freeze up and you will come across as incompetent and lacking credibility?
Let me assure you, I am not perfect in public speaking and I guarantee you most people are not. The key to great speaking isn’t avoiding the brain freezes, as we will all experience them at some point, it’s learning methods to recover from them.
Here are my five methods to get you back on track when you feel lost and things are spinning out of control.
1. Keep moving forward. If you stumble on your text or what you intended to say, just correct yourself. If you make a mistake, just fix it and move on. If you literally trip on stage, make a comment and move on. Don’t let it phase you. Don’t think, oh my gosh, I messed up! Just move on.
2. Be transparent and show the real you. Don’t hide yourself from your audience or you will constantly feel like you are putting on an act and this will be even more stressful. Allow the real you to shine through and the audience will be more likely to connect with you, trust you and like you.
3. Be in the moment. Notice your audience and connect with them. If you are constantly worrying about what you are going to say and what will come next, you will be more likely to make a mistake than if you stay present in the moment, noticing your audience reactions and responding to them. If you make an error, you will be more likely to recover when you are present in the moment.
4. Think of your presentation or speech as a communication. Don’t try to be perfect, worrying about what people will think of you and how good you are going to be. Instead, focus on getting your message across. These opportunities come to you because you have the knowledge and exertise that others can gain from. Stay true to yourself and true to your own skills and beliefs. If you make a mistake this will just become a part of your act.
5. Learn techniques to stay calm in the first place. Once you lose your calm it can be very tough to regain your composure, so why lose it in the first place? There are techniques you can learn to keep your self calm, stay grounded, control your speech, your thoughts and your anxiety. It all starts with breathing. Then keep a steady pace, don’t be afraid of silence and use your body language to stay grounded. This way you will look and sound like a skilled professional speaker.
Hi, I'm Lisa Hugo. I am passionate about helping singers and speakers understand, discover and develop their instrument within. Their Voice.