I went from a reluctant first time speaker to a seasoned, confident speaker, and you can too
by Christy Carruthers
I began my public speaking career as a nervous introvert with no prior experience. My first live performance was on a Disney cruise ship in a theater with 800 guests (and a panic-stricken presenter). I clearly remember trying to persuade the other crew members to push me down the steps because I was sure that if I broke my leg or had a bent ankle, they couldn’t do it to me. In the end, I can see how silly that was.
They would certainly have done it to me still.
I honestly remember very little about that first presentation. It seems that I have blocked the whole memory. But I remember the overwhelming fear I had before I started talking, and the intense relief as I spoke. Clearly, public speaking was not a natural talent for me.
So, therefore you can rest assured that when I say that you can overcome your fears and become not only a competent speaker, but also an excellent speaker, no matter who you are, it is absolutely true. Is. If I can do it then you definitely can.
There are a few tricks and techniques I’ve learned over the years that have made the whole process easier and less stressful, which you can use to make public speaking an (almost) enjoyable experience.
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They say that knowledge is power, but I would suggest that knowledge is confidence. Here’s what you need to know.
1. Know Your Stuff
The biggest fear barrier for most people is that they will forget what they should have said. So, write it, practice it, write it again in bullet points, practice it, rewrite it in even shorter form, practice and repeat. You want to keep doing this until you have only two or three words per bullet point, which will guide you throughout your presentation.
2. Know Your Location
The unknown is scary. The more you know, the better prepared you will feel. Find out as much as you can about the venue before the speaking date. Look at pictures of the room, see if there are steps up to the podium or podium for your notes. It helps you be prepared and let go of that worry.
3. Know who will introduce you and how
There’s nothing that gets you off your game faster than getting up on stage after someone misinforms you or what you’re going to talk about. It can derail your entire presentation and your confidence. So be sure to explain who will be introducing you and give the person precise notes of what you’re talking about and any details to share about yourself, including pronouncing your name if it’s difficult. Is.
4. Know Your Audience
This is the key to delivering a great presentation. Even though the content you share is basically the same every time, knowing who you’re talking to allows you to add details and remove any information or context to help you connect with them. which may not be suitable for that particular group. It also helps you build a connection with the crowd, which feeds you back energy and keeps your performance just right.
5. Visualize Your Performance
Elite athletes watch their race or event from start to finish hundreds of times before a competition. Walking through the entire routine or event helps them build their confidence, foresee potential issues and give their mind the confidence that when they enter the actual competition, victory is almost certain. . After all, as far as their brains know, they’ve done it a thousand times before. The same is true for you and your presentation. Imagine you are walking on stage, arranging your notes, taking the microphone, and thanking the host and audience for their warm welcome. Visualize every step from start to finish. Imagine the receptive audience, the applause, and the confidence you would have when speaking to a smiling crowd.
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6. Time It
Make sure you know how long your presentation will be. Speakers are usually allotted a specific amount of time, and going a little short is usually not a problem, but you don’t want to go halfway through your presentation that you’re almost out of time. It ends awkwardly without either following the full arc of your story or quickly trying to figure out how to summarize the last half of your presentation in the time you have left. Go. So, do good to everyone, grab a timer and stand up and say it out loud, as if you were actually presenting to the audience. We speak much slower than we read, so if you read it to yourself without speaking aloud, it would be much shorter than an actual live presentation.
7. Find a Friendly Face
This trick was always my secret weapon. I would arrive at my presentations 15 minutes early so that I could walk to the front of the stage and chat with some of the guests sitting there. The idea is to make a connection and a few ardent fans in the front row so that when you get up on stage and the nerves hit, you have a few groups of people to focus on who are smiling at you and making you happy. are. It boosts your confidence and helps you stand out from the rest of the crowd if you get overwhelmed.
8. No matter what happens, it’s over in X minutes
It’s a second secret weapon for the times when it really goes wrong. Just keep going, keep going and whatever happens, at the end of your time period, it’s done. it’s all over. You can stand there and say nothing for 15 minutes (not that I recommend it), but at the end of 15 minutes, it’ll be over. I’ve used this strategy more often than I’d like to admit, especially in the beginning.
9. Remember that maybe no one noticed that little slip but you
You know the content—the order in which you’re supposed to present it and what words you want to use—but the audience doesn’t. So just keep going; Don’t give that mistake another thought. If you keep thinking about that slip-up, you’ll get distracted and make more mistakes as you progress through the conversation. Just let it go and move on.
10. Record Yourself
This will probably be hard to watch, and I promise it will never be easy, for most of us. But it is incredibly useful for improving your performance. We all have verbal tics that we don’t even realize, like um and ahh or other filler words that we use in a repetitive way. We also have gestures, movements and physical tics that will distract your audience. The best way to catch and fix your unique verbal and physical tics is to record yourself as you present, then look back at it and see what you can catch and improve. It will also help you fix parts of your presentation that may not be clear or flow properly. Seeing yourself as your audience will see you is one of the best ways to improve both your presentation skills and your content at the same time.
Perhaps the most important tip of all is to just start doing it. The best way to improve in public speaking is to gain some experience and speak in front of people. So, whenever opportunities arise, take advantage of them and push yourself beyond what you are comfortable with to develop your skills.
This is your chance to share your stories and grow your audience by mastering a skill that many people will not even try. The more you do it, the better you’ll get, so prepare your story and then get out there and practice.
You already have everything you need to become a compelling speaker, so get started today. Plan to start putting together your first presentation. The world needs what you have to share, and no one can tell your stories as much as you can.
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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times