Public speaking can be a very daunting task. It is often known as people’s top five fears along with spider and heights. A Gallup says 40% of people fear public speaking — and some people fear it more than death. In short, some people would rather die than speak in front of a group of people. But, it should not be like that at all. Business wise, public speaking is one of the fastest ways to build a stronger client database along with building your business overall; especially if you are an aspiring entrepreneur. Personally, by becoming better and better at public speaking, one is able to experience an increase in confidence. Public speaking is an activity that everyone is going to have to do every once in a while. So rather fan fear it, we should embrace it with open arms.
Here are a few tips that can help you overcome the fear of public speaking.
1) Prepare..and practice
Many people do not actually take this tip seriously at all and wonder why they often stammer their words when they speak in front of others. One of the most effective ways to prepare for speaking in public is by practicing. By practicing over and over, whether it is in front of the mirror or in front of a friend, you will gradually feel much more comfortable with your own speech which then allows you to deliver it in a more articulate way when you are actually presenting. Drawing out an outline, or even writing out the entire speech will help you remember key points and examples you want to state for when you are speaking; decreasing the chances of you messing up in front of everyone. Additionally, by practicing in front of others, you begin to get used to being looked at which also eases speaking anxiety. Remember, if you fail to prepare, you are failing to prepare.
2) It’s okay to not be perfect
Many people who are speaking often try to perfect their speech and minimize the amount of pauses and filler words they use during their presentation. But, you have to realize everyone messes up and that it is completely normal to do so. Even the president makes a mistake or two when he is speaking. No one is going to remember the small mistakes you make, so do not stress over getting your presentation pitch perfect. You are not perfect, so mistakes will inevitably come; the goal is to limit the amount of mistakes as opposed to devoting all of your time to not making any at all.
3) Learn from the experts
Many people often become great at many things by continuing to work hard but by also emulating experts within their field. By copying people who have shown consistent success in whatever field you are aspiring to improve in, you are on a faster track to improving your own skills. Some of the most lauded public speakers include: Steve Jobs, Martin Luther King Jr., and Tony Robbins and are known for being able effectively captivate an audience during every presentation. Start by watching their speeches, study their mannerisms and movements, and more specifically how they deliver their messages and points.
Being comfortable with speaking in public, for just about everyone, is something that is very difficult. Often times, people will often skip out on speaking in public if they have the option to do so. But, public speaking is a very valuable skill to have. The process of preparing for a presentation could actually develop your critical thinking as you have to conduct research and then actually put your thoughts on paper and analyze them. Nervousness or anxiety in certain situations is normal, and public speaking is no exception. Just remember, you have done everything in your power to prepare and feel comfortable for when you are presenting. So why be afraid? Just relax and go kill it!
Hope this helps,