Whether public speaking makes your palms sweat, or you enjoy taking in the spotlight and engaging your audience. Public speaking is something that we all experience from school, university and in the workplace; it’s an unavoidable and often uncomfortable, part of life.
Glossophobia is a term used to describe the ‘fear of public speaking’. It’s estimated that 75% of us feel anxious when it comes to public speaking, with common symptoms such as sweating, shaking, nausea and an increased heart rate (to name a few).
Public speaking doesn’t just mean giving a large-scale Ted Talk presentation - it can apply to situations where there’s a smaller audience like meetings, interviews or even giving a toast at the dinner table.
Although Glossophobia doesn't go away overnight, if you look more like the picture on the left but want to look like the picture on the right, here's 3 tips to help you combat Glossophobia.
Top 3 Tips for Feeling More at Ease with Public Speaking
1. Your Preparation
As the famous saying by Benjamin Franklin goes ‘by failing to prepare, you’re preparing to fail’ and this applies to public speaking.
Knowing your material and practicing it in advance will help you feel well prepared. Try rehearsing your speech with colleagues or friends, or even stand in front of the bathroom mirror! Recording yourself is also a great tip.
If you're not quite up to recording your speech, even scoping out the venue or planning what you’re going to wear can help you feel more at ease.
2. Your Audience
Although we’re big believers in knowing your audience, you may not always know who you’re addressing. This fear of the unknown can feed into anxiety around presenting.
Before speaking you should think to yourself ‘I’m okay with you, you’re okay with me’ to try and lessen the feeling of being judged whilst in the spotlight.
Remember, if public speaking was easy then everyone would be doing it – getting in front of everyone is half the battle itself!
3. Your Mind
Leave the negative self-doubts behind and take a deep breath. Not every speech will be a winner and sometimes you just need to accept that making mistakes is all a part of your journey to becoming a confident speaker.
Being in the right frame of mind can create the biggest impact on your speech, try and avoid distractions beforehand and focus solely on doing the best you can. After all, you’re the only person who can hold you back.
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