Public speaking is often quoted as being one of our biggest fears.
There have been many studies that show there are a lot of people who fear public speaking more than death itself!
As macabre and scary as that sounds, public speaking is a serious issue for many people who are in a job role that requires them to speak in public and give presentations.
Even if your job doesn’t require you to speak publicly there are times in all our lives where we are called upon to make a speech or a presentation of some kind. It can happen while we are at school, in our social life and of course in our family life.
I’m sure we’ve all poked fun at a relative for being nervous at making a speech at a wedding, but have secretly been glad it’s not us making the speech!
If you want to avoid being that person who is remembered for your speech for all the wrong reasons, then read and learn my presentation tips below!
30 Top Tips for Confident Public Speaking
1. For many people fear of public speaking comes from feeling that you need to be word perfect when you’re giving a speech. You might fear that people will somehow look down on you or not believe you. In reality, it’s just the opposite – making a mistake just lets people know that you’re human, that you carried on with your speech despite making a few mistakes, and for that people will almost certainly respect you.
2. The fear comes from what you think people will expect from you. One thing you can do is to turn this fear around by asking yourself what you would expect from the speaker if you were sat in the audience. Would you expect them to be perfect? Probably not, so why have such high expectations of yourself?
3. You might be afraid because of previous bad experiences you have had with public speaking. But know this, the past doesn’t predict the future. It’s a different time, and you’re a different person from the one you used to be the last time you spoke in public.
4. Sometimes we put far too much pressure on ourselves. We expect ourselves not to show any nerves, to be able to answer every question, and to give a pitch perfect presentation every-time. That’s a huge amount of pressure that we’re putting on ourselves. If you can recognise that pressure is self induced, you can take steps to alleviate it.
5. Another simple thing you can do to reduce your fear of public speaking is to practice. The more practise you do, the less anxious you will be.
6. Take your fear and turn it to your advantage. Take your nervous energy and turn it into enthusiasm and excitement about your topic. Fear and excitement feel the same in the body – we just label them differently, and then feel differently about them.
7. And remember, your audience is there because they want to hear what you are saying. They really do want you to succeed, and they’re ready to listen to what you have to say. If that wasn’t true, they wouldn’t be there, would they?
8. Lessen your stress by doing plenty of research about the topic you are speaking about. Knowing that you are well informed about what you are going to say will help you to relax.
9. A great way to help yourself is through helping others. Showing people that their fear of public speaking is unrealistic can bring that point home to you as well.
10. Affirmations and visualisations work well for some people. They tell themselves they are powerful, strong and self-confident. This can work wonders if you are a nervous speaker and you practice saying them regularly.
11. A great way to reduce your nerves is to find a friendly face that you recognise in the audience. All it takes is for just one or two people who you feel comfortable with for you to feel more confident about delivering your speech.
12. When you think about your audience for just a minute you’ll realise that they’re just ordinary people like you, not ogres, and there is really nothing to be afraid of.
13. One of the easiest ways to gain self-confidence is to act as if you are already confident. Because when you smile, even if it’s a fake smile, you feel more positive. The same thing is true with confidence. Acting as if you are confident for long enough will make you feel more confident.
14. Take some time to think about the questions that might be asked by the audience. If you know you are prepared and can handle the questions, you will naturally feel more confident.
15. One of easiest things you can do to increase your confidence is to practice. Practice, practice, practice, and then practise again, not just giving speeches but in all types of situations. The more you speak in public, the more self-confident you will become.
16. Sometimes knowledge is power. Most of the time when a presenter makes a mistake, the audience doesn’t even notice. So, is making a mistake really worth stressing yourself about?
17. Stay active on the stage. Just simply moving around energises you and increases your blood circulation, helping to keep your brain active and clear of worries.
18. Make time for a workout in the morning just 45 minutes to an hour of exercise is a good way to keep you fit and healthy, to keep your energy levels up and your emotions in check. Keeping physically fit will pay off during your presentations.
19. Manage your anxiety by visiting the place where you will be presenting. If you can get up on stage and walk around. Familiarise yourself with your surroundings, and you will feel more at home during the presentation.
20. Getting enough sleep is an excellent way to manage your anxiety about making a speech. Sleep is the time when we recuperate and rebuild. Good quality sleep will help to calm your nerves.
21. Think and act positively. If you deliver the speech with a negative attitude, that will come across to your audience. Remember, they want you to succeed and they wouldn’t be there if they didn’t want to hear what you have to say.
22. Don’t focus on any negative people you may come across at the presentation. There will always be some negative people, so remember you can’t please everyone. You know the content of your speech is good, so concentrate on the positive people in the audience.
23. Always interact with the audience. The more you can get them to respond, the more you’ll know what they’re thinking and the more you’ll know that they’re listening.
24. Know your audience and what they are interested in hearing about. It will bolster your self-confidence to know that you’re speaking about a subject that they’re interested in and care about.
25. Take a pause, slow down and breathe. Being able to take your time and take a pause makes you seem more in control, and as a result you will actually feel more in control.
26. If you make a mistake, say something incorrect or something you didn’t mean to say, acknowledge it, apologise immediately and simply move on. You don’t need to make a big deal out of it, just simply apologise and move on with the rest of your speech.
27. If you forget your notes, don’t panic, see if somebody can fetch them for you. One easy strategy is to e-mail your notes to yourself and bring your computer or tablet in case you need to find a copy.
28. Research, plan, and rehearse your speech. When you do more of each one, you’ll find yourself more relaxed, and you will give a better presentation.
29. If you’re good at telling jokes, try to use a little humour. The audience will love it, and it will relax you as well.
30. Don’t just read from your script. That can be a negative experience for your audience, and it will also seem like a negative experience for you too. Know your content well and then you’ll only need to glance at a list of key points.
Whatever you do just take action
Of course, simply reading these tips isn’t going to make a huge difference, you actually need to put them into practice.
The only person that can do that is you.
So take action today and start to build your self-confidence one step at a time.
Put aside 60 minutes of your time
And let’s have a totally free, no-obligation discovery session to find out where you are in your life, and where, if a lack of confidence wasn’t an issue you’d really like to be!
We’ll discuss what areas you’d like support with, and exactly what help I’m able to offer, and we’ll also discover if we would be a good fit to work well with each other.
Whatever the outcome of our coaching session, I would be truly honoured to meet you and I’ll make sure that you get the best value out of our time together.
Please act now
Because my discovery sessions are few and far between!
Don’t miss out on a life-changing opportunity!
Commitment and motivation are crucial to your success! If you don’t take action and stand up for yourself, nobody will!
Remember – You have to make the first move, I can’t do that for you!
What to do now
I really do hope to hear from you soon!