There are many reasons so many people are terrified to speak in front of large groups of people. It can be daunting, and many of us have had bad experiences in the past, probably when we were kids. We can hold on to any experience we’ve had, and every time we go to speak, we may remember this “feeling state.” It is the recollection of this state that causes the fear we feel when speaking in front of crowds.
We get shaky and nervous and even when we are done speaking we can feel weak and vulnerable. But, whatever reason we have for being afraid, for many of us, public speaking is a necessary evil. Luckily, there are ways to control the fear and face public speaking head on.
While practice makes perfect, learning to control and manage that “feeling state” is the best way to overcome to the fear. Understanding and letting go of the fear is a skill that must be learned, but it is possible. Once this is accomplished, the fear will begin to dissipate naturally.
Some speaking “Don’ts” to Help You Connect with Your Audience
Along with learning to manage the fear, there are some key “don’ts” that can help when delivering any kind of public speech.
- Reading to Your Audience – Never! Unless you are quoting someone or reading a very short story, in which wording may be important. Nothing loses an audience as quickly as reading a talk. Do not memorize your talk. But know the key points, key stories, or key details that you wish to emphasize.
- Mispronouncing words – Write out the word phonetically above the typed word as a reminder. Substitute another word if this is still a concern. Rehearsing and practice is best.
- Do not oversell – Your audience can tell when you are and it will make them, and you, uncomfortable.
- Don’t apologize for something that may bring attention to mistakes that your audience probably wouldn’t even notice.
- Don’t use inappropriate humor – If you’re not sure if it’s appropriate, just don’t do it. Otherwise it’s a good way to quickly lose respect from your listeners.
There are also some workshops you can attend to help hone your public speaking skills that are designed to have you experience how to relax and find comfort and confidence in front of groups.
On Saturday October, 5th, 2013 be sure to check out the “Speak E-Z in Front of Groups” workshop. This workshop will help develop the skills it takes to feel comfortable speaking in front of groups and help you to dissolve stage fright. The skills you learn at the workshop will help you;
- Reduce fear and nervousness
- Work on communication from the inside out
- Increase your confidence – be authentic
- Connect with your clients, peers, staff, etc.
- Sell your ideas
- Be comfortable in your own skin!
We all know those people who can stand up in front of a group and chat away as though they are talking to an old friend. They are cool, calm and collected and get their point across without a hitch. These types of people may be rare, but they do exist. It is also completely possible to become one of them.
Once you can control your fear, and remember these important tips, speaking in front of an audience won’t seem so daunting.