Nervousness and anxiety are pretty common these days; our hands start shaking, our palms get covered with sweat and our stomach feels some uneasy contractions. These are common but at the same time serious enough to ponder upon. Fear of Public speaking also called as ‘glossophobia’ is of these common anxieties most people face one time or the other. Speaking of which, fear of public speaking could be minor or even fatal. The rate of death because of glossophobia is very high in the past decades.
Communication skills are the top requirement of today’s industry, whether you an industry man or not. Public speaking is one vital aspect of it. Public speaking can make or crush your persona. The fear of public speaking can be overcome in numerous ways. Some of them are listed below.
- Know your topic; before starting speaking, gather and understand what you have on your plate. The more you have the insight into your topic, the less would be the chances of mistake. In any case, you get off the track; you’ll have enough knowledge of your content that you can recover whatever it is. Little/incomplete knowledge is always injurious; hence it is better to know every aspect of your content. With this, one can also be able to predict what the audience can ask from you.
- Be organized; don’t pour out whatever you have learned, organise your knowledge in a more approaching and presentable manner. Keep your content precise yet complete. Practice what exact points you want to deliver. If it includes any networking, technicality or props, check it before your speech so that last-minute hustle can be avoided. This will reduce the level of nervousness.
- Fear of rejection; the biggest hurdle of success is rejection. Try to eliminate the negative thoughts and get on to what you have prepared. Of course, you’ll try to minimise every mistake but in case if it happens then don’t worry, mistakes are the reliable proof of your success. If the audience has been gathered, it is because of certain reasons, hence, be the reason!
- Quality over quantity; your material should be of good quality irrespective of your audience but of course, you should be familiar with what audience you have. Your content should be appealing and approaching every one sitting as the audience.
- Watch your appearance; your posture, your way of presenting words, clarity in your voice, facial expressions and body gesture; it all matters. If you’ll present yourself as a dull and under-confident person, you’ll lose your audience as well as your words. How approaching is your words is important but how appealing is your body language, is equally important.
- Practice in mirror/with your friend first; practice your speech on someone who can give you an honest critique of your speaking skills and your content like your family members and your friends or a mirror. You’ll be able to improve a lot through this. For voice checking, you can record your whole speech to observe how well or approaching your voice is.
- Breathing; don’t panic hence your breath won’t hinder your words and voice. Stay calm and take breath calmly. This will make you more relaxed and focused.
- Avoid talking too fast; speaking too fast can result in fumbling and poor delivery of the speech. Don’t anticipate speaking, speak slowly but clear. Your too fast delivery of speech will make the audience have the insight of you being nervous. I hope you don’t want that to happen, no one wants to, hence slow and steady wins the race. Take significant pauses. It’ll make you overcome your anxiety and emotions. Consider your speech as music and then add deliberate pauses to make it more significant.
- Reward yourself; even if it is a minor achievement, pat your back yourself. Give yourself some reward like your favourite food, clothing or whatever. These little rewards will help you achieve big success. You’ll be able to keep yourself motivated and positive throughout your struggle.
- Never stop practising; fear of public speaking is nothing that can be learned overnight, it requires practice, a lot indeed! Give at least 15-20 minutes daily to your speaking skills. Those bathroom arguments you make with yourself will be going to help you. Keep a script or quick notes of your speech with yourself every while.