Public speaking is something that many people dread. It does not have to be complicated, and in fact you can improve your skills in this area. Thankfully, you came here, and if you would like to be better at public speaking, then continue ahead to the following article. Below you will find many solid tips that are recommended by professionals who specialize in public speaking.
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.
Try to relax before and during your speech. Breathe deeply and remember that you are well-prepared, so you have nothing to worry about. Some say that it helps to envision your audience members in their underwear to help you relax. This sort of visualization can help you look and feel more relaxed while speaking.
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.
Some people prepare their notes for speaking in public by using a tablet or other device; however, this is not necessarily a good idea. Murphy’s law is sure to strike and leave you with a dead battery, a stolen device or some other catastrophe. Be safe and write your remarks on index cards as well as keeping them on your mobile device.
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.
Take a look at the venue before you make your speech. See how big the room is, how many seats there are, and what the lighting is like. You will feel less nervous when you know what environment you will be dealing with. Also, try standing at the podium to get a feel of the stage.
Know your topic well. Take the necessary time to research your topic and learn all you can. When delivering your speech, try to be flexible. Allow participants to ask questions. If you do not know the answer, tell them that you do not know, but you will find the information out and make it available to the group at a later time.
When asked to speak at a wedding, you may be tempted to try some sort of funny patter or to poke fun at the participants. Even when your intentions are good, this can be hurtful. It is better to speak in a friendly, caring and supportive way at this important event.
Do not make people wait until the end of your speech to ask questions. People may likely forget the questions that they had. People will appreciate you much more as a speaker if you allow them to ask questions whenever they like, so give them exactly what they want.
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.
Get your head in the right zone. It is common to find yourself feeling anxious. Everyone feels nervous before a speech. But, you do not want to descend into negative thoughts. If you think you’ll do badly, you may. Know you will do a great job and you will.
Think about the purpose of your speech. Do you need to persuade someone? Are you speaking to entertain? Maybe you are speaking to educate your audience. Always keep your purpose in mind to make a great speech. Make sure that every statement in your speech is working toward that goal.
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.
Do your best to control the pace as you speak. Nervous people typically speak quickly. You might have the greatest written speech, but it will do no good if the people you are speaking to can’t understand a word of it. Try to speak at a slightly slower or normal pace so that your audience is able to understand you better.
After your speech is completed, be ready to answer any questions the audience may have. If you’ve been given a certain amount of time, speak for 75 percent of that and allocate 25 percent to a question and answer period. Also, avoid being too long-winded with your answers so that more people can participate.
Be sure to stretch your body before doing any public speaking. It isn’t just about your voice. Your entire body is on stage while speaking. Just five minutes of stretching can relieve a ton of tension and give you the appearance of being relaxed. That’s a big thing, and it’ll help make your speech a success.
As you can see from the above article, anyone can improve their public speaking skills with just a few solid tips. The biggest thing though is practice, and since you have these tips to follow, there is no reason why you should wait any longer. Get out there and show the world how much better you are at public speaking!