For many, the idea of public speaking fills them with nervousness & fear.
That said, I genuinely believe that everyone is capable of it. I believe that even the most nervous person can develop the skills to manage their nerves and successfully deliver a presentation.
Here are my three tips for developing confidence in your ability to present infront of an audience.
Many people think that having a script - or notes to the side, will make them less nervous. I actually think having notes increases your nerves. (I'll let you have brief bullet points, but not long form notes!)
The fear of stumbling your words, forgetting chunks of content or getting lost mid way through, only adds to the fear of 'looking silly' infront of the audience.
Take the pressure off, internalise what you want to say so that it comes naturally and then go and deliver it without the pressure of a script.
The first mindset shift is to move from, 'I'm nervous' to 'I'm ready'. Rather than pacing the room, or sitting around feeling sick, outwork that energy in some other form that is motivating and energising. It might sound ridiculous, but try punching the air or doing some star jumps. You might find it helpful to have some upbeat music playing in your dressing room or through headphones as you prepare.
Before you go on, just be confident of your opening lines and deliver them with the same energy that you had for your star jumps or punches.
When you hit the stage, find your place on the stage and plant your feet into that spot. Lock your knees so you are stood firmly in one place, with a confident stance and put all the energy into presenting from your waist upwards.
Try not to move those feet for at least a few minutes into your presentation. If you do find yourself moving, be sure to come back to this stance, You'll find it calming, the audience won't feel sea sick from your pacing, and you'll present outward confidence, despite feeling terrified internally.
Is upfront presenting a regular part of your chosen career? Does it stress you out, cause major nervousness or do you simply need to invest in your development of that skill?
I'm looking to start a small group coaching membership for those who want to develop in this area. We'll be exploring the techniques of performing artists to enhance our presentations and improve our mindset when it comes to being upfront.
If this might be of interest to you, email me at [email protected]
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