Public Speaking - Conquer your uneasiness
Speaking anxiety is incredibly common. For many, it represents simply a fear of public
speaking - also known as glossophobia. Even those who are not necessarily anxious about other things, may find themselves having some degree of anxiety when it comes to having to speak in front of an audience. When you get nervous while speaking, your mind has a tendency to create a significant amount of negative self-talk.
Negative Self-Talk is a serious problem for those with public speaking fears. They imagine worst case scenarios. They may over-analyze what occurred in the past, and try to find all of the mistakes they have made. Everyone misspeaks at times. It happens. Do this. Picture yourself delivering an exceptional presentation. Remind yourself you’ve earned the right to be there. Your self-talk should be “I am an engaging speaker.” “My audience finds value in my presentations” “I got this!”
Whether you're about to lead a big presentation at work or you're simply leading a discussion in front of your team, there are several strategies you can implement before the engagement that may help you overcome your speaking anxiety. The key advice is to rehearse your presentation. Practicing your presentation in front of peers, family, or friends can dramatically improve the quality of your presentation as well as the opportunity to receive valuable feedback.
If you have any concerns that you're going to forget your content, those concerns will only grow larger when you're actually speaking in front of your audience. Practice, practice, and practice some more until you are confident with your content.
Some of the world's most famous presenters have freely admitted to nervousness and stage fright. Mark Twain said it best, "There are two types of speakers: those that are nervous and those that are liars".
As Jerry Seinfeld puts it, “If four people attended a funeral, three of them would rather be lying in the coffin than at the podium giving the eulogy.”
While there are many reasons why public speaking can cause anxiety, there are just as many ways (if not more) to improve your public speaking skills.
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