Stage fright when giving a speech is often associated with the fear of failure.
From personal experience I can admit that this is not a pleasant feeling: Legs tremble, the throat is dry, the voice is thin, sweat running down the spine and to concentrate is nearly impossible …
None of this is of any help when you need to be convincing and want to attract others.
Trust yourself that you are well prepared. Of course you have to do your homework: Build your presentation with a logical structure that is easy to follow. Prepare super easy visuals – as little text as possible. And prepare a message that people will remember after your presentation.
Important: step back from complicated explanations – keep everything simple.
Beginning is half of it done! Know your fist sentences or your first minute of your presentation by heart. Rehears them over and over again. Use different tonality, play with different voice levels when you rehearse your start. You can do this in silence or speak out loud when driving in your car.
Important: Also rehearse the end of your presentation. This will ensure that you will finish with a strong message.
… is you. Stage fright and nervousness will only happen, when your concentration is on yourself. You feel your voice, your legs, your inability to focus. Once you shift your focus away from yourself and pay more attention to your audience, nervousness will disappear.
Important: Speak louder. Maintain an intense eye contact with all your listeners. Move forward and stand close to your audience instead of pulling back.
All actors and athletes experience stage fright. But they also have individual rituals they perform before they start.
Employ your own ritual that will make you strong and puts you at ease. (Maybe make a fist, tighten your muscles and say to yourself: ‘I am focused and convincing.’ or ‘I am giving a great presentation.’
Our body has a very strong influence on our brain. Take advantage of this.
You might also like this: Body Language Does Matter
Visualization is one of the strongest methods to conquer stage fright and nervousness.
Lean back, close your eyes and see yourself as if you are giving your best presentation ever. See how you speak up, how you stand close to your audience, see yourself maintaining good eye contact. Also see how convincing you are and how you will handle critical questions with logical answers. See all of yourself at your very best.
Important: You have to do this more than once. This will give you great strength. Rehearsing in your mind will activate the same parts of your brain as actually doing it. This means once you are in your real presentation your brain will say to you: This is easy. We already have done this before.
Yes, this really works. You just have to do it and find out for yourself.
Next time you feel stage fright when giving a speech use one of these powerful techniques – or all of them. You will find out, that each of these techniques will have a great effect on you.
And always remember. Your listeners want you to be strong and they want to hear an interesting speech from you. If someone asks you to give a presentation, you must be of certain value to them. Be proud of this and give your best.
I wish you lots of success for your next presentation
is a High-Impact Executive Coach. Using his vast experience, he prepares management und C-Level for optimum performance. All content created for better results and better teams. Andy works with international companies around the globe. He supports individuals and teams who want to achieve more in business and life.