Do you dread the thought of standing up and making a speech? Are you terrified of public speaking? If so, you are not alone. Public speaking is one of the scariest things around for many people. To help overcome your fear of giving a speech, read the advice in this article.
Make sure that you stay focused once you get out there and start talking. Your message will not be received well if you go too far off topic. Do everything you can to stay on the original topic, or you may risk scaring away a large portion of your audience.
The tone of your speech should depend on who you are giving it to. For instance, if your speech is work-related, your speech should be professional. On the other hand, if you are around friends and have to make a speech, you can be more personal. Base your whole speech on your audience.
Make sure that the beginning of your speech is a moment to relax. Greet and address your audience. Then pause for three seconds. This gives them a chance to focus on you, while you get a moment to transform your nervous energy into enthusiasm for the material you are about to deliver.
If you are nervous when you first stand up to speak, there are a couple of things you can do. Either choose a person toward the center of the audience to focus on or focus on a point at the back of the room. An EXIT sign is a good choice. This will help calm your nerves.
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.
Try to find humor in the situation if things do not go as planned. There are many variables when you speak in public, which means that there are many opportunities for things to go wrong. The microphone or projector may not work, there may be an interruption in power or someone may enter the room in the midst of your speech. Try to take things in stride. Taking things too seriously can result in you having a meltdown, so try to laugh off any issues that may arise.
If you are using visual aids, don’t make them distracting. You only want them to help enhance your speech. You don’t need to overwhelm your speech with them. To make important points, make sure your visual aids are high quality. They shouldn’t take away from your message.
Be familiar with the environment in which you are speaking. Arrive early so that you can look over the room and set up and check any equipment you are using. Practice using any audio-visual aids so that you know how they work and you know they are in working order. This helps you avoid an embarrassing issues with equipment and provides you with more self confidence.
If you plan to give multiple speeches within a short period of time, take care to protect your vocal cords. A hoarse or inaudible voice is not likely to sway audience members’ opinions. Sleep with a humidifier in your room, sip hot tea, and drink plenty of water throughout the day.
Avoid nervous gestures and mannerisms. Don’t cross your arms or rattle your keys in your pocket. Use your hands to convey your points, but not too much. You don’t want to distract or annoy your audience by waving your arms around. Get a friend to watch you rehearse your speech to identify any gestures or movements that may be problematic.
Set up a video recorder and practice your speech a few times and record them. then you can look back and what yourself in action. You can take notes, make changes to try for the next time you practice. Having a video of yourself in action can help you assess how at ease you are and how confident you seem.
To connect with your audience, begin your speech with a story. This can be something from your past. You will find that they are much more interested to hear what else you have to share. Do not include any inappropriate references in your speech.
Know what your strengths are. Frame your speech around your strengths. For example, if you can tell a great story, tell one that your audience will enjoy. Find a way to incorporate the story into your speech in such a way that it flows seamlessly into the presentation of the facts you need to get across.
Speed should be monitored when speaking in public. Nerves can speed up your voice, which can make your audience miss main points. Speaking too slowly can cause your audience to become bored. Practice your speech beforehand many times to deliver it at the perfect speed.
Use quotes to your advantage when speaking in public. A good quotation can form the basis of your remarks, or you can intersperse quotes throughout your speech. When using quotes, be sure to give credit to the source. Practice delivering the quote in an effective tone of voice and with the proper inflections for best results.
If you must give a eulogy for a loved one, be sure to prepare well. This will help you keep your own grief under control as you speak. Keep it brief and memorable with a few key points about the deceased. Remember that, no matter how much you may be grieving, the event is not about you!
Work on your pacing. Unfortunately many people get nervous when speaking in public, and this can lead to a rushed speech. No one in the audience will understand your message if you are speaking too fast. Try to speak at a slightly slower or normal pace so that your audience is able to understand you better.
As you can see, there is really nothing to be afraid of when it comes to public speaking. You may feel a bit nervous the next time you are called upon to give a speech, but just remember what you have read here. This advice will make it all a lot easier.