If the thought of speaking in public puts you into a tailspin, you’re certainly not alone. Millions of men and women of all ages share your fears. Anxiety doesn’t just affect you physically; it also compromises your ability to get your point across. Fortunately, there are many strategies for developing your public speaking skills.
Don’t assume that people will automatically know what you mean. You have to get their attention and hold on to it. This is a performance, which means that you will have to work hard in order to get the results you want.
Never drink before you have to speak in public. People under the influence tend to slur their words or forget them altogether. You may go up to podium and think you have everything under control only to realize you were incorrect. That is why you should skip drinking any type of alcohol.
Do not allow anything to distract you while you are speaking in public. It is crucial that you don’t participate in activities like twiddling your thumbs or jingling keys. This will give your audience the idea that you would rather be doing something else than be there talking to them.
Practice makes perfect, and helps you master what you plan to convey. Watch and listen to yourself speaking to see what you can do to make your speech better. However, it is always best to prepare your speech in front of family and friends, since instant feedback is the best.
Never tell the audience that you’re sorry for being nervous or any other issue that comes up. Chances are they didn’t even notice in the first place. Even if they do, coming across as lacking in confidence detracts from your position of authority on your speech that you are making.
Whether you are new to public speaking or it is something you have done dozens of times, watching videos of the pro can be helpful. Viewing them allows you to see what the experts do and say to engage their audience. You can then try using these techniques when you give your next speech.
If you must do a lot of extemporaneous speaking, be sure to keep up on current events and topics of interest. In this way, you will always have something new and interesting to say. Remember that it is usually best to choose a complimentary approach rather than a humorous one unless you are extremely sure of your ability to amuse people!
Even when nervous, never apologize. Your audience may not notice even if you think that you are making all sorts of mistakes. Correct any mistakes and move on.
Tell a joke to break the ice. A joke can help calm your jittery nerves. Additionally, a well timed joke will allow your audience to relax and see you for who your really are. However, be aware that telling too many jokes can make your audience not believe anything you say.
Each of these tips has proven effective for individuals who once shared your apprehension. With the right mindset and motivation, anyone can deliver their message regardless of the audience size and environment. While you may not ever look forward to future public speaking engagements, you can be sure that you will no longer dread them.