There are several ways to overcome public speaking jitters. These include visual aids, recording your speech, exercise, and other helpful techniques. In addition, you can try cognitive behavioral therapy. However, it's important to know that these methods won't work for everyone. But thinking positively, if you're one of the many people who experience public speaking jitters, give yourself some grace and try the below methods to see what may work.
One way to overcome public speaking jitters is through exercise. Exercises such as deep breathing and flexing and relaxing muscles are great ways to relax your body and release tension. Try doing these a few hours before you have to speak. This will make you feel more comfortable and you will be less likely to continue stressing about your upcoming presentation.
Some find going on a long run helps. In theory, you are expending energy, focusing on form, speed, and hopefully enjoying the passing scenery. Running may help burn off nervous energy and cause a rise in feel-good endorphins just in time for your debut.
One of the best ways to overcome public speaking butterflies is to use visual aids. This technique can help you avoid making your presentation appear dull and lifeless. Using visual aids will also increase message retention; help your audience remember your message for a longer time. That means more opportunities for you to make a good impression.
Visual aids can help you stay focused while keeping your audience from being distracted by your nervousness. You may feel your heart beating faster or your hands may begin to shake. You may even experience a panic attack. However, this should not be the end of the world! A few well-chosen visual aids can show the audience what a talented speaker you are. Consider using them to buy you a few quiet seconds. Announce that you will give your audience a few seconds to scan the aid you are showing to them. Then use those seconds to quell your nerves and continue doing a great job.
Recording your speech
Have you thought about recording your speech before the big day? This is not only an effective way to practice, but it will also help you focus your speech and increase your confidence. By recording your speech, you can see how you sound, how you deliver your message, and which areas need improvement.
Another way to overcome public speaking jitters is to practice in front of a few people you know. When practicing, be sure to outline your speech in detail. You may want to color-code your slides or your notes to help you remember specific points. You can even practice reciting your speech to a friend or family member. If you have any visual aids, you should practice with them to see which ones are most effective. You can also try practicing in front of a mirror and with a recording to improve message delivery.
Cognitive behavioral therapy
Some people tout alternative therapies as a solution. Hypnotherapy for public speaking is one alternative method for dealing with fear. This method focuses on identifying negative thoughts and overcoming them. The result could make you a more effective presenter with better concentration skills.
It is said that through cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) you could reduce negative self-talk and learn new ways to approach situations. It also helps you to develop confidence. The therapy works by helping you look at the situation as a task instead of an anxiety attack.
Practice in a small group
Practicing in front of a small group can be a big help. Gather a small audience, go through your entire speech and allow them to give you valuable feedback on your presentation. Consider asking a trusted friend or family member to attend your speaking event. You will feel less alone and know there is someone quietly rooting for your success the entire time.
When practicing public speaking, you should do it under similar conditions to your actual performance.
Skip the Video…occasionally
If you have the option to deliver your presentation online, technology can be your friend. Can you have an impactful message without showing your face on camera? Try it. May help tamp down your fears. Or maybe only be on camera for a few seconds, connect with your audience, then turn it off for a while and collect yourself. And don’t forget one of the most powerful ways to rid yourself of being nervous…smile or have a quick laugh!
Remember…being nervous is a natural emotion. Have confidence that you can have some jitters, yet deliver a great presentation.
Drop a comment below: What do you do to build up your confidence before a workshop or public speaking event?
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Cyrene is a fun and accomplished workshop facilitator, learning and development guru and Human Resources professional. Being at the helm of Thrive Lounge has been a long-time dream. Through vision board workshops she plans to accomplish two-way learning. Sharing her vast years of knowledge to motivate and encourage others; while simultaneously receiving back the reward of great energy, ideas and questions to ponder from the TL group. A super win-win!
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