Many people are intimidated by public speaking. If your fears are holding you back from being behind a podium addressing other, don’t worry. You can do several things to diminish that fear. Review the following information for some great ideas to help you become an effective public speaker.
The way you look can determine how well you do at public speaking. If you are not well-groomed or dressed at your best, you are not going to feel very confident with yourself. This lack of confidence may cause you more fear and could mess up your whole speech. So, be sure to look your best!
If you have to speak publicly, try to keep it at twenty minutes or less. This is the average attention span of most individuals, so speaking for longer than this is going to risk boring them. If you have to speak for longer than this, find some way to change gears in the middle to liven things up.
Know your surroundings. Take a few moments when you arrive to acquaint yourself with your surroundings. If you can arrive early, go to the podium and do a soundcheck before your audience arrives. If you have visual aids, practice using them while you are orientating yourself with your surroundings.
Always face the audience consistently when speaking in public. Don’t let yourself get distracted by things occurring around the room. You want to make your audience see your point, which means they need your complete attention.
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.
Arrive half an hour early for your speaking engagement so that you can familiarize yourself with the room. Determine where you will be during the presentation. Figure out what path you will take to get to the podium. Be sure to have a glass of water placed on the podium. By taking care of these small details, you will feel more comfortable while speaking.
Prior to giving your actual speech, practice it in front of a loved one. When you are done, ask them which parts of the speech are fine and which parts need some improvement. You may even want to read it to a few people. This feedback can help improve your speech.
Be sure to use appropriate visual aids to make your speech more interesting. A picture or an object is worth a thousand words and can add depth and dimension to your presentation. Be creative in your choices of visual aids. Photos, paintings, sculpture, souvenirs, charts, graphs and many other types of objects can help you get your point across clearly.
Don’t beat yourself up if you make a mistake during your presentation. Unless the information given wrongly is important do not correct your mistake. Instead, continue on with your speech like nothing has happened. If you need to correct the mistake you made, apologize and correct the mistake and continue on.
Always leave your audience wanting more. Nothing is worse than a speaker who drones on and on for what seems like hours. Instead, get your information delivered in a timely fashion. Keep the speech within the requested time parameters. However, do not keep your speech so short that you do not give your audience the information that they desire.
Try your best to convey emotions as you speak to your audience. If you are monotone, this will only make people bored and they will stop listening to you. While you don’t have to bounce of the walls to let them know you have energy, it is important that you show some type of feeling.
Be prepared for the unexpected. While you hope that nothing will happen to ruin your speech, try to plan for any contingencies. What will you do if one of your audio visual aids does not work? What if the microphone fails? How will you handle audience interruptions or questions? Having a plan in place to handle possible issues makes it more likely that your public speaking experience will go well.
Be sure to practice public speaking out loud. It may sound simple, but a lot of people tend to practice in their head. They speak the words internally instead of speaking out loud. This can cause all sorts of issues the day of your speech. Get used to hearing your voice, so it doesn’t throw you.
To improve your public speaking skills, take tips from professionals. Many public figures give moving and effective speeches, but so do other, less-prominent people. Watch people who give speeches to see what techniques work well for them. Try to incorporate those techniques to improve your own public speaking. Likewise, notice things that others do during speeches that do not work or that detract from their message, and avoid doing those things.
Visit your venue a few days in advance to get the lay of the land. Being familiar with the room where you will speak will make everything easier and more comfortable. On the day of the event, be sure to arrive early to socialize with members of your audience and begin creating a connection.
Before speaking, do some vocal warm ups. If you speak in the morning, this is important. Otherwise your vocal chords may have tension during the speech. Vocal cracks can occur if this is the case, and your voice make take on a tinny quality.
Always begin a eulogy with a moment of silence. This allows you to take a deep breath and compose yourself. Be sure to say a few nice things about the deceased followed by something to inspire and uplift the mourners. End on an appropriately positive note that will give the survivors hope for the future.
Having read this article in full, you now know a few tricks to harnessing your fear of public speaking. Keep coming back here whenever you’re preparing for a speech. You will gain confidence the more times you utilize these ideas. Get to practicing.